Thursday, June 27, 2013
What do people think about when they look at animals in zoos?
Research has shown that the average visitor spends thirty seconds to two minutes per enclosure (Mullan and Marvin 1999). Visitors barely watch the animals, and ignore the educational signs about them. After visiting the zoo, for many visitors, the take home message is that humans are superior to other animals, according to social ecologist Stephen Kellert (1979, 1997).
But what do zoo animals think about their lives, while people are watching them? There's no real way to know, of course.
Daniel Zakharov is a photographer whose series Modern Wilderness focuses on the daily lives of animals. In these images, which feature the lives of zoo animals, we see the animals engaged in the limited activities that their captivity allows them: pacing, sleeping, watching, and thinking, perhaps, as Alison Nastasi writes, about the conditions of their own existence.