Martin Aveling

AFC Conservation Artist of the Month for June, 2019

We are celebrating Martin Aveling this month for his support of conservation causes and focussing on one in particular that exemplifies the role an artist can play in supporting another dedicated conservationist. Artists play an important conservation role by volunteering in the field, by raising funds for conservation organizations, donating artwork and by drawing attention to worthy conservation causes.

Through his drawings, Martin strives to raise the profile of endangered wildlife around the world and to generate support for its conservation. Among the organisations whose work has benefited from his support are Fauna & Flora International, the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation, Orangutan Land Trust, the Orangutan Foundation, Tusk Trust, Elephant Family, For Rangers and rhinosUP.
One of Martin's roles in support of nature is his support for a young man in the UK who is fixated on the plight of the White Rhino and the paoching issue. He supported a young 8 year old Frankie Benstead to raise funds and create a garden in his UK hometown to draw attention to the plight of the White Rhino. This is a story worth reading about on Martin's AFC website and Martin receives a harty thankyou from the young man. In his words, " He tells me lots about animals and is helping me with my project. One day when he was visiting me and my family, he told me all about his visit to Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya. As we made a rhino out of play-doh, he taught me about the different rhinos and told me so many of the things that I now know about northern white rhinos."

To understand Martin's perspective on the role of an artist in Conservation we would draw your attention to an article he wrote for BBC Wildlife about taking a more active conservation approach within his drawings:  
You are encouraged to visit the BBC site. It is a very good read.

Most recently Martin attended the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation (DSWF)in London for the celebration of the ‘Wildlife Artist of the Year'. Martin's turtle painting titled "A Plastic Plague" - was awarded a highly commended. He decorated the frame with nurdles to bring it back to the root cause of plastic pollution. He made a film about nurdles in which he got an expert on marine plastics to explain what they are:


Martin Aveling's passion for drawing was born out of his surroundings art a very young age. While his parents were working to conserve mountain gorillas on the steep forested slopes of the Virunga volcanoes, Martin picked up pencils and drew them.

Martin's inaugural exhibition 'Metamorphosis' (2001) at the Pool Room Gallery in Nairobi was a sell-out success, and other solo exhibitions in Kenya, the UK and the USA have followed. After graduating from the University of Bristol in 2004 with an honours degree in Geography, Martin built his career around his primary passion for art and the natural world. He is a regular on the London wildlife art scene, having exhibited with the Society of Wildlife Artists and at the DSWF ‘Wildlife Artist of the Year' event, for which he has been a finalist the past eleven years. An award from the Society of Wildlife Artists took him to Indonesia in 2008, fulfilling an ambition to observe orangutans in the wild. He also designed one of the elephants for the capital's biggest public art exhibition to date, ‘Elephant Parade London 2010′, and a crocodile for ‘Jungle City' in Edinburgh 2011, raising funds for Asian elephant conservation.

In 2010 Martin drew the first illustration of the newly discovered Myanmar Snub-nosed monkey. During Easter 2012 his three foot high ‘dinosaur egg' was installed in central London for the record breaking 'Fabergé Big Egg Hunt'. His work has been auctioned in Paris, and featured in charity auctions hosted by Christie's and Sotheby's. He is an ambassador for Derwent pencils and provided the artwork for their current pastel pencil range - his favoured medium for over 20 years. In 2018 Martin was invited on as a signature member for AFC. He is also a founding artist for Tagsmart - the world's only integrated artwork provenance solution.

Learn more about Martin

Previous Conservation Artists of the Month

(December, 2020)
(November, 2020)
(October, 2020)
(September, 2020)
(August, 2020)
(July, 2020)
(June, 2020)
(May, 2020)
(April, 2020)
(March, 2020)
(February, 2020)
(January, 2020)
(December, 2019)
(November, 2019)
(October, 2019)
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