Ghost Maps

Ghost Maps challenges the culpability of the entertainment industry in the mistreatment and endangerment of animal species as a result of misrepresentation and mixed messaging.

The fantasy to control animals, tame them, enforce commands and train them to do human tasks is commonly reinforced in film, theme parks and storytelling.

Atrocities like the electrocution of Topsy, the circus elephant, for public entertainment to prove the power of Edison’s currency, haunt me and prompted this series of oil paintings on old educational classroom maps of the world. Although the work is triggered by calamity, the visuals evoke pop culture history and a love for the natural world.

– Leslie Nemour