Our Gorilla art honors these Great Apes which share 98% of the human DNA!
Totally mind blowing that you came this close to...
Yet despite being our close relatives—certainly from the genetic standpoint—mountain gorillas are on the precipice of extinction.
This is due to human-induced habitat destruction, protracted civil war its remaining habitats, and poaching.
Mountain gorillas are endangered and according to the most recent census, only about 1,063 individuals are left in the wild.
Due to the factors cited above, the mountain gorilla's habitat has now shrunk to a 38.9 sq km (15 sq mile) area that straddles just 3 countries.
These are: Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of Congo and, Uganda, which also happens to be the birthplace of yours truly.
Tourists pay top dollar for permits to track gorillas on foot...
They are called mountain gorillas for a reason, so tourists have to slog and hike through thick, "impenetrable" vegetation to encounter these gentle giants.
A nice bonus is the opportunity to hang out with the Batwa (plural) tribe.
The Batwa are a pygmy peoples who live in the vicinity of the gorilla-inhabited national parks but whose forebears were forest dwellers.
An adult Twa man's height averages about 1.5 m (4 ft 11 in).
Gorillas live in central Africa's montane rainforests where succulent bamboo shoots—their delicacy—are in abundance.
These primates also eat fruits, tree bark and roots but absolutely no meat.
They are therefore herbivores for the most part although they may occasionally snack on termites, ants and even snails.
So because they are so rare, endangered and yet also—paradoxically—super strong, mountain gorillas are the darling of art collectors around the globe.
A female mountain gorilla gives birth to a baby weighing 1.4 – 2 kilograms (2.2 – 4.4 lbs) after an 8.5-month gestation.
The infant gorillas are furry to help them cope with the low temperatures in their high-altitude habitats.
And they cuddle up with their mums at night to keep warm when the temperatures dip even further.
Art of any baby animal is adorable and is a much sought-after category of African wildlife art.
Baby gorilla art even more so.
Take this cutie, for example.
Do you see the humanness, the playfulness, the innocence in its gleaming, beady eyes?
I keep asking Hoods just how he is able to create such true-to-life eyes. He simply smiles. I take the point and back off—it's his secret sauce, I guess.
What do you think of this piece of this semi-abstract silverback on all fours by Hoods Jjuuko?
Authenticity: Debossed "Jjuuko Hoods" in bottom right corner.
Materials: Oil painting on canvas.
Dimensions: 27.6 in x 35.4 in (70 cm x 90 cm)
Description: This is a live portraiture which Hoods created at a gorilla naming ceremony called kwita izina in Kinyarwanda.
Scene? Virunga National Park in Rwanda, one of only three countries in the entire world where the mountain gorilla is making its final stand.
Until they are 12 years old, each male gorilla develops black fur.
After that age though, sections of fur on its back and hips turn white, earning it the "silverback" appellation.
Silverbacks are especially fascinating because they are big and can weigh up to 500 lbs.
So whoever came up with the phrase "800-pound gorilla" didn't quite get the facts right.
It doesn't even come close!
A silverback gorilla is also a symbol of power as it occupies the coveted position at the apex of the family hierarchy.
Price: US$ 1,850, inclusive of courier shipping and insurance.
Payment: Bank deposit.
Shipment: 2 business days after payment clears.
Ships in a: Mailing tube.
Ships from: Nairobi, Kenya.
Delivery: 7-14 days after shipment.
Discount Eligible? Yes. Buy any 2 pieces of artwork on this website and get 5% off the cheaper one.
Numbers don't lie.
Fact: With just a handful of individuals left in the wild, it is a lot easier to see any of the Big Five than the mountain gorilla.
This grim reality also, unfortunately, translates to the realm of art.
Only a few artists can truly depict the power, charisma but also the proportionality and vulnerability of this Great Ape.
So where we have torrents of other African wildlife art, gorilla art pieces only trickle in—even then, very occasionally.
So get yours before these pieces are all gone.
And before there are no gorillas left in the wild for artists to base their portraiture on.
Better yet, let your art piece be an ambassador for its sentient counterparts. Making an urgent case for the very survival of mountain gorilla as a species…
Because they are charismatic and strong and intelligent and furry.
But even more important, because, despite these endearing characteristics, these primates have the inherent right to life; the right to exist.
Yes, while the aesthetic appeal of African art is important, we also need to conserve Mother Nature so that she can continue providing the subjects.
And for this virtuous circle to continue for generations.