As I mentioned before, wetlands are extremely important environmental resource for all species on Earth and it has many important functions to the maintenance of the natural world. Not only can wetland play a role in water purification, flood control and ecological stability, but also it is also the habitat of many animals and plants that are found nowhere else on the planet. Therefore it is crucial to preserve and protect the wetlands from destruction of urbanization. Unfortunately, they are already in danger because of the incredible speed of human civilization in the recent decade. I am worried that wetlands will completely disappear one day and cause irreversible effects on the environment. The main purpose of my project is trying to let more people know the importance of wetlands, and trying to persuade them in putting more attention on the protection of wetlands. I decide to create a bronze statue of a squirrel with a nut in its hands, it is easy to be accepted and understood by most of the people, including kids because it is a very cute figure, too. What this statue does is showing the basic ecological relationship between squirrel and nut, it will definitely reflect the connection between animals and plants at the same time. The statue would be a miniature reflection of the animals and plants that live in the wetland and by viewing this statue, people would realize that wetlands are valuable to the preservation of not only the squirrel, but also the ecological wetland system as a whole.
At the beginning I was thinking about which animal best represents wetland and also able to show “harmony”, I was thinking about using “red-crowned crane” as a symbol of wetland, because it is a very ancient and rare bird in China which demonstrates a positive figure. However, it is impossible to find this kind of bird in UWB wetland so I gave up this original idea. I realized that squirrel can be good choose for my project, it can be found everywhere in the wetland and people are very familiar with this kind of small creature. I am tried to create my work with a simple concept which is to show the beauty and importance of “ecological relationship” in wetland. I didn’t entering a real wetland before, after I visited the UWB wetland with Gary, my feeling toward wetland is growing stronger. Wetlands are full of wilderness and it is a kind of natural beauty. I think this is the reason why I chose squirrel for my statue. Moreover, when compared to other rarer or more representative animals in the wetland such as a crocodile, a squirrel is more acceptable to the general public and could raise empathy simply because it looks cuter. As it in the picture, the squirrel’s eyes are wild open, looks like it wants to find more food. There is a nut in its hands but this little squirrel will never feel satisfaction because it wants more of it. Its ears are standing up which looks like that it’s trying to listen to any threatening sounds in wetland. I think my design is appropriate and cute, and it is able to represent the UWB wetland.
I was planning to make it a bronze statue, it can be place in the entrance of UWB wetland and it does not need to be very big, so the budget probably can be $3000, this is the fee for purchase material and cost of labor.
by Qilin Zeng