Pawel Bogumil’s Photographs Of Primates

The photographer, Pawel Bogumil, spent 3 years photographing primates that were housed in zoos around Europe. The result was his work called InHuman:

Gorgeous Photos That Show How Primates Express Emotions, Slate, 21 July 2016

Here are a few photographs from the Slate article. There are more there and on Bogumil’s site.




Bogumil said, “From my perspective I can say they have distinct personalities just like people.” You really can see differences among them, not just physical characteristics but what we humans might perceive as emotions.

One thing that disturbs me is that these animals are being observed inside a zoo, a cage if you will. The photographer removed the backgrounds so we’ve lost the perspective of how the apes are intereacting with their environment. No living creature exists without interacting with its environment. All of our senses evolved to assist us in that task. We breath, we eat, we select mates and reproduce, we fight, we love, we laugh, we cry. Everything we do, all of who we are is bound inextricably to our environment. So, some of what we see in their faces is their response to being imprisoned.

Speaking of interacting with our enviroment, Jane Goodall, “considered to be the world’s foremost expert on chimpanzees,” famously said:

“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.”

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