In December 2016 Pollyanna stepped off a plane on to Australian soil – and in doing so successfully completed an incredible quest – to be one of the few artists who have painted on all seven continents. Driven by the beauty and intricacy of the wilderness, she is renowned for her travels into some of the most remote and inhospitable parts of the world, where she studies and paints endangered species in their increasingly fragile habitats.
Check back soob for a feature page about this joureny including photos & sketches.
On all except the very first of her journeys, Pollyanna has been accompanied by her daughter and business partner Anna-Louise (above) who not only organises the expeditions, but also documents them photographically for Pollyanna’s talks and books, and keeps detailed journals which then form the basis for the text of the books about their travels.
Several of their expeditions have been truly ground breaking. In the early 1990’s they were the first two western women ever to travel to a remote area of the Borderlands of China and Tibet, where they worked in a hospital for pandas – and incredibly also sighted a wild Giant Panda – at a time when fewer than 50 westerners had ever done so. In 2008 Pollyanna was granted a fellowship from the Canada based Artists for Conservation Society and undertook a landmark expedition into the remote and isolated Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan, carrying their expedition flag. She became the first western artist to comprehensively study and paint the wildlife of the kingdom, and the resulting paintings were exhibited in the UK, Canada and New York – and this year will also be shown in China. Pollyanna is the only artist ever to have sketched the Ethiopian Wolf from life. The rarest wolf in the world, there are none in captivity anywhere – even in Africa – and Pollyanna travelled to the Sanetti Plateau high in the Bale Mountains to search for them.
Most importantly every single expedition which Pollyanna has undertaken has subsequently inspired a collection of paintings – and each exhibition of this work has raised vital funds for a conservation or community project in that country. From building a rehabilitation enclosure for orphaned painted dogs in Namibia to rescuing a moon bear from the unspeakably cruel bile farming trade, carefully selected projects help some of the most vulnerable species globally.
And although Australia might be the final continent for Pollyanna it is definitely not the final journey – this Summer she will be heading to Brazil in search of jaguars in the Amazon basin. She is also looking forward to joining Born Free in Kenya to help build lion proof enclosures for Masai cattle, and will be returning to the deserts of Arizona to continue studying their unique wildlife prior to a one man exhibition in Tucson in 2018