An educational trail in ARTIS Amsterdam Royal Zoo
Five installations of observation and reflection around the Asian elephant enclosure:
Instruments, revealing the sensory world of elephants,
Often hidden for humans.
A low rumble, hard to hear;
The smell of attraction;
The coolness of mud;
Feeling the smallest groove;
An expressive sign language.
Each instrument transmits human understandings of the elephant world
And helps to better observe the elephants and the enclosure.
Working as an amplifier for the senses
And as a reminder that there is more to our environment than meets the eye.
Listening alongside the Hollandse Tuin for example, I hear the rustling of wind in high trees
And listen! The low rumble of an elephant!
Clayed in our studio and cast in brass
The installations are heavy and tactile, like an elephant.
Openings and surfaces are portals, slowly polished by use.
An ear to hear;
A nose to smell and to feel;
A skin to sense heat;
An eye to see and to recognize gestures.
The trail makes learning an act of active discovery.
Together the installations deepen an understanding of other animals and landscapes.