Welcome to the “rainforest on canvas,” artist Rosita Gottlieb’s stunning expressionistic images dedicated to rainforest conservation.
Rosita’s rainforest artwork was the focus of her painting activity and gallery exhibitions for 25 years, beginning in 1989. “Visions of Hope” she called the series, to bring attention to conservation and the protection of threatened wildlife and plant life throughout the world.
She described the inspiration for her work thusly:
“Throughout the tropical world, rainforests are being cut down and burned at a staggering rate – each year rainforest acreage the size of the state of Ohio disappears.”
“My native country of Costa Rica is a beautiful land of mountains, forests, lowlands, rivers, sandy beaches and more than a half-million species of plants and animals. Maybe you have visited there and experienced the beauty.
“During many decades, much of the country’s once lush forest cover was destroyed for timber exploitation and cattle ranching. But fortunately, the Costa Rican government made a strong commitment to halt further loss and has set aside remaining rainforest as parks and reserves. These efforts have put Costa Rica at the forefront of growing international conservation awareness. Unless efforts like this succeed in Costa Rica and elsewhere, tropical rainforests are in danger of disappearing soon.
“Even though distant, rainforests directly impact our lives. The world’s tropical rainforests are critical links in the ecological chain of life. The rainforests contain over half the world’s wild plant, animal and insect species. One in four phamaceuticals comes from a plant in a tropical rainforest. About 70 percent of the plants identified by the National Cancer Institute as being useful in cancer treatment are found only in rainforests. Rainforests produce oxygen and consume carbon dioxide. The Amazon rainforests, for instance, produce about 40 percent of the world’s oxygen.
“I regard the endangered creatures and plant life that I paint as spokesmen, as visions of hope, for conservation efforts…and a reminder of our duty to respect nature if we want to enjoy its bounty.”