“It’s not only a question if the Black Jaguar Foundation needs you. I think you also need the Black Jaguar Foundation.”

KOEN VANMECHELEN

Conceptual artist

“It’s not only a question if the Black Jaguar Foundation needs you.
I think you also need the
Black Jaguar Foundation
.”

KOEN VANMECHELEN

Conceptual artist

About me

As a multi- and transdisciplinary artist, Koen Vanmechelen is one of the most prolific and prominent artists of our time. Central to his extensive and innovative oeuvre is the concept of biocultural diversity and identity. His groundbreaking works have been presented on almost every continent on our planet. A few examples of where his work has been exhibited: the National Gallery and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, the Pushkin Museum in Moscow and the Museum Kunst Palast in Düsseldorf. Vanmechelen’s art was also part of the prestigious Venice Biennale and the World Expo in Shanghai.

Over the past ten years, Vanmechelen has collaborated with scientists from a variety of disciplines. His groundbreaking work earned him an honorary doctorate at the University of Hasselt in 2010 and the Golden Nica prize for Hybrid Art in 2013. In January of 2015, the city of Genk and Koen Vanmechelen launched a project to construct a new contemporary destination for the former site of the ‘Zoo van Zwartberg’ with ‘La Biomista’. It is an extraordinary project in which the ambitions of the artist and the city come together. The 20-hectare site consists of three parts: the villa, the studio and the park. The new sections were designed by Swiss architect Mario Botta. Always on the move, Koen Vanmechelen proudly donates his time and talent to raise awareness and support for the Black Jaguar Foundation.

How I relate to the BJF

Koen Vanmechelen has become a BJF Ambassador because, in his vision, the BJF carries out what is truly required: helping to restore two of the most vital ecosystems on earth.

Koen Vanmechelen became a Black Jaguar Foundation Ambassador because, in his vision, the BJF carries out what is truly a necessity: helping to restore two of the most vital ecosystems on earth. For Koen, supporting the BJF is important because it connects with his own work and his ability to raise awareness on a global scale. As an ambassador, he is able to integrate the BJF’s work in his art in exhibitions and many museums around the world. In this way, anyone can see what is happening and at the same time learn that there are still people who are fighting to preserve our planet and our humanity.

“To protect nature is a human right. As humans, we have rights. But we can only have rights if we respect our environment and our nature. So, as a human being, I believe it is my duty to become Ambassador of the Black Jaguar Foundation.”

Koen’s work is an ode to all life on earth. “Every organism needs another organism to survive. In the same way, every generation needs another generation to survive. The work of the BJF affects each of us and will especially benefit our future generations.”