Andries Botha’s elephants are not made of flesh and blood, but that certainly does not mean they lack souls. Built over a massive metal armature, each elephant’s shape takes hold with strategically shaped driftwood. The multi-elephant compilation You Can Buy My Heart and My Soul from 2006 is making its rounds of the Internet after spending time as a public installation piece.
Elephants have had a major impact on Botha’s work in his homeland of South Africa as evidenced through his comprehensive portfolio. His CV lists that he serves as a senior lecturer on sculpture at the Durban University of Technology in Durban, South Africa.
[quote] In African mythology, the elephant reincarnates carrying the soul of a murdered God. It is thus the embodiment of the transmigration of souls. It is also the metaphor for the world’s preoccupation with Africa as an exotic location. The elephant thus embodies the world’s romanticism with Africa. In part, it is the Colonial panacea: wildness can be contained, civilised and taken back to the ballrooms of the First World as a trophy.” [/quote]