By artist Rebecca Jarman in collaboration with researcher Bino Majolo
A series of digitally drawn images of Barbary macaques.
Resource scarcity often leads to competition between individuals or groups to access those resources, and can be a big driver of conflict in our world, both for humans and animals. With respect to competition between humans and wildlife, the ‘exponential growth of human population and infrastructure’ has reduced ‘the amount of ecological resources available for wild animals’ (Waterman et al, 2020), and this leads to changes in their behaviour as safe habitats and food sources become harder to access. Competition for resources between members of the same species, of which human warfare is the most dramatic example (Majolo 2019), can result in lethal violence in non-human animals too, including ants, wolves and chimpanzees.
‘Resource Wars’ takes Dr Majolo’s research on Barbary macaques, resources, and war and translates it into a series of digital images that provide some insight into this research. The piece presents an anthropomorphised, androgynous Barbary macaques, clad in army style gear and in an uncomfortable stance. Combining the physical aspects of humans and Barbary macaques blurs the lines between the two species, bringing them and their experiences closer together. ‘Resource Wars’ asks us to consider the effects of resource scarcity on the experiences of different species and the similarities that it can draw out between us.
Majolo, B. (2019). Warfare in an evolutionary perspective. Evolutionary Anthropology, 28, 321-331.
Waterman, J. O., Campbell, L. A. D., Maréchal, L., Pilot, M., & Majolo, B. (2020). Effect of human activity on habitat selection in the endangered Barbary macaque. Animal Conservation, 23, 373-385.