Beyond the Great Wall – Pollyanna Pickering Summer Exhibition
Date: 19th June - 4th July 2010
The painting 'Race for Survival' (left) was exhibited for the first time, and will be exclusively launched as a limited edition print. Click here to buy securely online
Pollyanna was proud to open her private gallery to present a major exhibition of over fifty original paintings inspired by her journeys far beyond the Great Wall of China to paint endangered wildlife.
The painting of a Red panda which secured Pollyanna her current title of SAA Professional Wildlife Artist of the Year was exhibited for the first time in her home county, having previously been shown in London and New York.
Pollyanna braved temperatures as low as -29º, journeying to the rarely visited extreme North East corner of China in search of wild Amur Tigers on the Russian Borderlands. Fewer than 20 of the tigers exist in the wild in China, and despite spending days in the region, the tigers proved elusive. However Pollyanna was able to sketch the tigers in a breeding and conservation centre established to create a pool of Amur tigers with a pure genetic bloodline, with the eventual aim of re-introducing the cats into this remote mountainous region which they once roamed in large numbers.
The most iconic animal to be found in China is of course the Giant Panda – designated a ‘National Treasure’ by the Chinese Government. Fifteen years ago Pollyanna and her daughter Anna-Louise were the first two western women ever to travel to a remote panda reserve in the Tibetan Borderlands of China. Here they worked in a small panda hospital, helping to care for a six month old baby panda bear – and in the surrounding mountains succeeded in seeing a wild Giant Panda.
Since then the Earthquake which struck the Sichuan Province in 2008 has devastated the region, with many of the roads yet to be rebuilt. Pollyanna followed in her original footsteps to the starting point of her journey – the city of Chengdu – where she visited The Giant Panda Breeding Research Base sketching the residents, including the beautiful red pandas. However her main destination was The BiFengxia Giant Panda Base. Originally planned and built as a ‘training’ centre to prepare captive bred pandas for release into the wild, since the earthquake it has provided sanctuary for 53 pandas relocated from the centre at Wolong. Pollyanna was fortunate enough to be allowed to work closely with the pandas, even sitting quietly inside their enclosures to sketch – an opportunity few wildlife artists will have shared!
A limited edition book will be exclusively launched during the event – a faithful reproduction of the sketchbook and journal Pollyanna kept throughout her expedition. Also on display throughout will be Pollyanna’s popular ranges of cards, prints and giftware featuring her work, and visitors also had the opportunity to win an original painting in a Grand Prize Draw.
Ten percent of all sales were donated through Pollyanna’s charitable foundation to fund the rescue of an Asiatic Moonbear from the cruel Bile Bear Trade in partnership with the Animals Asia Foundation.
Click here for more about the journey which inspired this exhibition
The painting 'Fragile World' (above) which secured Pollyanna the title of SAA Professional Wildlife Artist of the Year 2009 was displayed in the Midlands for the first time at the exhibition... read more
Pollyanna in China
Painting of a Young Panda at BiFengxia.
Visitors to the exhibition were able to see field sketches made by Pollyanna, along with artefects she brought home from China - including panda droppings!!