Happy 20th anniversary to our talented Artist in Residence

January 15, 2019

Pip McGarry is celebrating two decades as Marwell’s wildlife artist…  

Internationally renowned wildlife artist Pip McGarry is celebrating his 20th anniversary as the zoo’s Artist in Residence. A self-taught artist, Pip began selling his artwork above the sweet counter at the zoo two decades ago and today is one of the world’s leading wildlife artists with his work commanding up to five figure sums.

Pip’s highlights include his highly successful ITV Meridian TV series ‘A Brush With the Wild’ in 2004 as well as forming the Marwell International Wildlife Art Society, which grew to be the largest of its kind in Europe. He has also organised nearly thirty safaris to Africa for artists and photographers. He said: “Marwell is my spiritual home – it really has been a great catalyst for me and I’m so proud to be the Artist in Residence here.”

Today his paintings can be viewed at the zoo’s gallery inside our shop. The exhibition features stunning paintings of animals Pip has encountered during trips to Africa as well as Marwell’s very own tiger cubs.

For Pip, his favourite work in the new collection is a painting of a young elephant swimming in the water. He explained: “I knew fairly early on I seemed to have an affinity for painting eyes and water. The eyes really are the soul of an animal. For a long time I’ve wanted to get a picture of an elephant glistening in the water. We were on a boat at a standstill at the time on the Chobe River, Botswana when the elephant came down into the water and swam past us. It was just amazing, the perfect moment. You are aware these animals are so big they could overturn the boat but they are trustful enough to respect you and just go on by. It was a wonderful moment. I have an affinity with wildlife.”