Big Red

189 x 202cm, Öl auf Leinen

Hardly any other animal can compete with humans in terms of empathy and willingness to use violence as well as the elephant.
Its long-term memory in particular clearly outshines that of humans.
The behaviour of elephants seems almost uncanny when one reads the specialist literature and reports on their cognitive abilities and deep emotionality.

Elephants are very similar to humans, especially in their unpredictability - surely this also contributes to my fascination - a macabre deja-vu feeling - an expectation that says: "Attention, everything is possible - friend and foe in one. It doesn't get more human than that.

In my preferred large-scale portraits of these imposing and highly sensitive giants, it feels throughout the painting process as if I am conversing with old chatty souls about God and the world. Interviewing these elephants in a painterly way is always refreshment and catharsis for my own soul. It is precisely this experience that I would like to pass on to the viewer - I would like to hand it over to him from my heart with care - like a treasure.

©Fiona Hernuss

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