Artist Tom Tischler describes how his sculpture subjects “choose him” when he is inspired to make a piece. Like several of his works, this artwork is informed by his detailed knowledge of animals, and depicts their relationship to each other as well as to their environment.
Notice how these meerkats look active and alert, and that they are interacting with each other. Have you spotted how many artists create a lifelike eye in bronze? They make a small dot, which our brain interprets as the glint of an eye.
The base for this sculpture is a work of art in itself. It was created by Waco-based concrete artist, Victor All in Blome, and was constructed to look like the termite mounds where meerkats often build their burrows.
By Tom Tischler
Tom Tischler had an obsession with wildlife as a child and later as an adult he gained useful knowledge of taxonomy and anatomy in Switzerland at the Zoological Museum of Zurich, Swiss Foundation of Alpine Research and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature in Switzerland.
He then spent 4 years working in Africa for the Ethiopian Conservation Organization helping to establish their national parks and reserves. Inspired by his time in Ethiopia, Tom Tischler began his first sculpture.
Tischler currently resides in Perth, Western Australia where he works in his studio and travels extensively. He only completes a few originals each year, as bronze is a time-consuming process, however a limited number of castings are made of his work, using the Lost Wax process. His ability to portray each species in a natural and lifelike manner is a characteristic feature of his works. Each sculpture is influenced by his time spent working alongside, sketching, and photographing animals.View all sculptures by this artist.
Did You Know?
- The meerkat is a mammal in the mongoose family and is the only member of the mongoose family that doesn’t have a bushy tail.
- A family group of meerkats can be called a ‘mob,’ ‘gang’ or ‘clan’. These groups usually contain around 20 meerkats but sometimes have as many as 50.
- A clan of meerkats will always have one “sentry” on guard to watch out for predators while the others forage for food.
- Meerkats have excellent eyesight; they can spot predators in the air from more than 300 meters away.
- If the meerkat on guard spots danger, it barks loudly or whistles in one of six different ways.