Communities coexisting with wildlife are the only way forward for truly sustainable conservation.
Often on the Save River near Mahenye Village, I watch colourful, hardy Nguni cattle drinking at sunset and giving way to elephants; ladies washing their vibrant clothes in the late afternoon sun on the shore of an African river where African wild dogs roam…
The river is the porous divide between domestic and wild-a fascinating and challenging overlapping of two ways of life.
My two paintings are complementary to each other, reflecting the need for integration, for understanding of wildlife/domestic stock issues in sensitive Zimbabwean ecosystems; celebrating the importance of vital community support for wildlife, for a healthy biodiverse climate.
All Things Connected in the web of life.
Lin Barrie, Nguni Sunset, acrylic on loose canvas, 55 x 90 cm
Lin Barrie, Painted Wolves Sunset, acrylic on loose canvas, 55 x 90 cm
The Save Valley Conservancy stretches along the upper reaches of the great Save River in the south east of Zimbabwe. The Gonarezhou National Park laps against the southern banks of the Save River and between these two nestles the Malilangwe Wildlife Reserve. These three celebrated wildlife areas form part of the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area, (GLTFCA)- a unique wilderness jewel which is home to the “Big Five” (endangered Black and White rhinos, elephants, buffalo, lion, leopard) and the ”Little Six” (Klipspringer, Suni, Duiker, Steenbok, Sharpe's Grysbok and Oribi). Endangered African wild dogs, Cheetah, Brown hyena, Bat-eared foxes and a host of special birds and plants contribute to the immense variety of this ecosystem. Communities around the GLTFCA contribute to innovative partnerships with National Parks and the private sector, forming a sound base on which to manage social, economic and environmental issues.
This is home to artist and writer Lin Barrie and her life partner, conservationist Clive Stockil.
Expressing her hopes, fears and love for this special ecosystem with oil paints on canvas, Lin Barrie believes that the essence of a landscape, person or animal, can only truly be captured by direct observation.
Lin Barrie states: “Through my art, and my writing, I feel an intimate connection with the natural world, and from my extensive field sketches of wild animals, people and landscapes, I create larger works on canvas.
Lin's work is in various public and private collections in South Africa, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Australia, England, Canada, Sweden and the United States of America. She is represented by galleries in South Africa, Zimbabwe, England, Kenya and Florida, USA.