Leitah. Wire mesh, hydrocal, epoxy, bullets. Rhino sculpture covered with ammo by Mary Engel. All Rights Reserved. The animal archetype as it is found in diverse cultures’, whether similar or disparate, is fascinating to me. The first intentional burials with ritual objects occurred 35,000 years ago and, with them the first expressions of human faith appeared. Among these objects, a predominant burial image was the animal. The use of ritualized animal images has had enduring religious, mythic, and aesthetic significance. A love for animals combined with these significances make animal images central to my work and philosophy. For me, these images symbolize a bridge between the rational and instinctual worlds.
Leitah, a rhinoceros, is the largest in my most recent body of work of endangered animals sculptures covered with ammo. I build using wire; mesh and hydrocal then cover with epoxy and ammo. Each piece is built from the paws or hooves up, is hollow and unique.
Leitah is named after a young woman in the Black Mambas, the first all-female anti-poaching unit patrolling the Balule Nature Reserve.
See more amazing work at maryeengel.net