Philadelphia Zoo to Open "Second Nature," an Unconventional New Art Exhibit

Artists from all over the world recycle, reuse, and repurpose everyday materials into amazing works of animal-inspired sculpture

PHILADELPHIA, PA (January 28, 2015) – Philadelphia Zoo invites visitors to experience an unconventional new art exhibit with the Saturday, April 11, 2015 debut of Second Nature. This larger-than-life array of artist installations, including a magnificent 35-foot tall 9,000-pound tree, tell stories of endangered animals through the use of recycled, reduced, reused, repurposed and renewed materials.
Second Nature, running through October 31, 2015, unleashes the creative imaginations of 12 renowned artists, who have expertly crafted animal-inspired sculptures from unlikely items, reanimated and given new life, including burned-out spark plugs, recycled plastic bottles, cardboard boxes and wads of chewing gum. Second Nature will intrigue, delight and engage Zoo visitors in the small things we humans can do to make a world of difference for wildlife and habitats.
From a totemic 13-foot-tall blue gorilla sculpted entirely of recycled car parts to two giant 9-foot-tall pink rabbits fashioned from recycled plastic; from an evocative primate shadow-sculpture composed by casting a beam of light on a pile of discarded electronics to a menacing 8-foot-long crocodile molded from chewing gum, each of the artistic installations will forge a connection between human behavior and animal endangerment through works of art that amaze and inspire so that reducing, reusing and recycling become Second Nature to all of us.
“We are pleased to host such amazing and thought-provoking works of art for Second Nature,” says Vikram H.  Dewan, Philadelphia Zoo President and CEO. “Many of these pieces are larger than life-sized interpretations of species future generations of Zoo visitors may never see if we don’t take steps to preserve habitat. Yes, this will certainly be a spectacle of magnificent, colorful art work throughout the Zoo, but it’s also a reminder – one that everyone can understand -- that there are many ways to reduce, reuse and recycle to positively impact wildlife. The artists participating in Second Nature are some of the world’s most creative conservation heroes.”  
Second Nature features the work of world-renowned artists, including Don Kennell, Cracking Art Group, Flux Foundation, Laurence Vallieres, Diem Chau, Aurora Robson, Ann Smith Larson, James Corbett, Diet Wiegman, Maurizio Savini, Leo Sewell and Gerry Ellis, nature and wildlife photographer and recipient of the Zoo’s Global Conservation Prize.
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America's first zoo and one of the region's foremost conservation organizations, the Philadelphia Zoo is home to nearly 1,300 animals, many rare and endangered. By connecting people with wildlife, the Philadelphia Zoo creates joyful discovery and inspires action for animals and habitats. The Philadelphia region’s leading family destination, the Zoo welcomed more than 1.3 million visitors last year. The Philadelphia Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. For more information on the Philadelphia Zoo, as well as to purchase and print tickets online, visit us at Philadelphia Zoo is a non-smoking facility.