A case labelled “woodcutting tools belonging to Albrecht Durer, 1515” Dürer typically made relief prints, a technique whereby a matrix is incised, charged with ink and printed onto paper. Woodcuts are made using the long grain of a section of wood, whereas wood engravings are cut into the end grain, which allows for finer detail. Sharp … Read more 31


In the same year as he imagined the representation of the rhinoceros, Dürer completed engravings of the Northern and Southern celestial hemispheres. These were the first commercially printed star charts produced in Europe. While the northern constellations were fairly accurate, based on the charts of cartographer and mathematician Johnannes Stabius, and work by astronomer Conrad Heinfogel, the southern … Read more 30


Possibly anticipating high demand, Dürer rendered the image as a woodcut rather than an engraving, which allowed for faster reproduction and distribution. A large edition of 4000-5000 prints was revolutionary at this time in print history.  In 2013 a copy of the woodcut was sold for $866,500 at Christie’s in New York today, setting an … Read more 28


A selection of hunters and collectors of rhinoceros over the past 300 years etched into rusted steel plate. Harry Manners: (1917–1997). African elephant hunter. 1000 elephants shot. P.T Barnum: (1810–1891). Founder of the Barnam and Bailey Circus that presented rhinos as performers in the 1870s. Also an exhibitor of people. Henry Hartley: (1815–1876). African big … Read more 24


Photographs taken of the rhinoceros dioramas at the American Museum of Natural History, New York. The specimens in the black rhinoceros exhibit were taxidermied by Robert Rockwell and the background painted by Robert Cane, who travelled to Kenya with the Campbell expedition in 1937-8 to make sketches for the backdrop of Mount Kenya. James Perry … Read more 62


This case contains a book containing a mirrored image of an Indian rhinoceros from Conrad Gesner’s Historiae animalium, 1551. This late Renaissance book presented a composite cultural and natural understanding of animals – animals in complex social and associative relationships. The interwoven facts and fictions provide a rich cultural biography of each animal. His book … Read more 29


These cases contain forms of restraint – chains and rope. In January 1515 the Nossa Senhora da Ajuda, set sail for Lisbon from Goa, laden with a cargo of spices and a single rhinoceros in the hull. This two-ton pachyderm serving as both cargo and ballast sailed for 120 days chained below deck, surviving on … Read more 22


Excrement from 5 different rhino species, labelled with the names of 5 significant specimens from zoos. Pretoria Zoo 1946 – Cerotherium simum. The first white rhinoceros shown in captivity. “Zulana” from the Umfolozi Game Reserve was born on 23 July 1946. London Docks 1872 – Dicerorhinus sumatrensis. The first Sumatran rhinoceros born in captivity – … Read more 21


Chalk written texts are employed as didactic moments in the exhibit. These cases hold the scientific names of the five extant species of rhinoceros.  Ceratotherium simum White rhinos are the second largest land mammal. They have a square upper lip, from which is derived their name from the German “weit” (wide). Two sub-species exist in … Read more 20