THE STORY SO FAR

The Great Elephant Migration is an environmental art exhibition that shares stories of life and survival in human-dominated landscapes. Using the elephant as an ambassador for the entire animal kingdom, the exhibition shares the story of the human race, sharing space.

The sculptures are modelled on real wild elephants in the Nilgiri Hills of Southern India, where people and elephants coexist in the densest populations in the world. Each member of the herd is known by name and personality by the indigenous tribes who create them. Their creation provides livelihoods, status and pride to 200 people of the Soligas, Bettakurumbas, Kattunayakan and Paniyas tribes who live in remarkable connection with nature.

Elephants are constantly on the move to find the next place to graze, but to do this, they must cross deadly roads and railways – dodging traffic as they go. This installation recreates the coexistence of migratory animals meters away from the pinnacle of motor sports, Formula 1. 

ELEPHANTS IN CULTURE

Elephants represent many things: they’re symbols of luck and prosperity, but they are also powerful beings that use their mighty strength to remove obstacles and negative forces. Elephants have ancient roots in the Arab world, with references dating back to civilizations like the Pharaohs of Egypt and the Sumerians of Mesopotamia.

The year of Muhammad’s birth is identified as ‘the Year of the Elephant’, when Mecca was attacked by Abraha accompanied by elephants. Abraha’s intention was to divert pilgrims to his new cathedral, thereby benefiting his kingdom financially. However, the elephants in his army refused to approach Mecca, and Abraha was ultimately defeated. Ancient Arab civilizations have always held elephants in high regard, valuing their strength, wisdom, and symbolic significance.

THE MIGRATION

As the herd migrate, they shine a spotlight on global environmental challenges, whilst highlighting conservation successes. Conservation charity, Elephant Family, has so far staged migrations in Asia and Europe.

Launched at Buckingham Palace, under the Patronage of King Charles and Queen Camilla, in London 2021, the monumental and moving installation of 100 life-sized elephant sculptures triggered a moment of collective empathy for the natural world.

The herd now look towards Bahrain, whose superb connections to the rest of the Gulf and Asia, enable the seeds to be planted on the importance of treasuring our planet and all life within it.

AMBASSDORS AND SUPPORTERS

TRHs King Charles III & Queen Camilla

HH Shaikh Abdulla
bin Hamad Al Khalifa

Mark Stewart

Sarah,
Duchess of York

Genevieve Britton
Ambassador

HRH Princess
Eugenie of York

BIODIVERSITY IN BAHRAIN

The Kingdom of Bahrain is making tremendous efforts to protect the environment and natural resources as well as preserving the biological diversity in which humans live, in order to ensure the continuity and sustainability of the natural balance.

Bahrain has one terrestrial and five marine Protected Areas where unique species such as the dugong, Socotra cormorant and houbara bustard are preserved.

It is also the first country in the region to develop a biodiversity database, a process that lead to the discovery of twenty species who make Bahrain their home.

ELEPHANT FAMILY

Elephant Family works to protect Asia’s magnificent, endangered elephants in the most joyful and engaging way possible. Since inception in 2004, the charity has partnered with over 1,000 creatives and accomplished 8 large scale public art exhibitions in London, New York, Edinburgh, and Mumbai. These award-winning exhibits have engaged artists and fashion houses from Jeff Koons to Peter Blake, Ridley Scott to Dior, Bruce Weber and Vivienne Westwood.

Over $30m has been raised in this way which has powered 150+ projects across India, Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia, Sumatra and Borneo. These projects have reconnected forest fragments, restored migratory routes, stamped out illegal trades and enabled humans and wild animals to successfully live closer together than ever before.