Stunning Artworks Focus Attention on Cruel Treatment of Bears in Circuses

For Immediate Release:
1 May 2018

Singapore – At its headquarters in Beijing, SOHO China is displaying a striking collection of bear images painted by over 80 artists and celebrities – including artist-in-residence at The Vagabond Club Chloë Manasseh, leading Chinese realistic painter Zhou Song, Chinese painting master Cui Zimo, and the designer of the 2008 Olympic medal, Xiao Yong – as part of a People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) exhibition that calls attention to the plight of bears used in circuses.

Visitors can admire all the wonderful artwork at the exhibition, as well as learning about cruelty to animals and how to stop supporting it.

“Over 80 of the world’s most caring artists and celebrities have helped PETA create beautiful bear-protection pieces,” says PETA Vice President Jason Baker. “This evocative exhibition celebrates the spirit of the bear and sends viewers a strong message that they should never support circuses or other animal-exploiting operations.”

PETA’s investigation of circuses in Suzhou revealed that bears were forced to spin hula hoops, box, and play trumpets under the constant threat of violence. In addition, bear cubs were strung up by their necks for hours to train them to stand on their hind legs, among numerous other forms of abuse.

PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment” – notes that while bears in the wild can roam for hundreds of kilometres, those used in circuses are routinely held in dog kennel–sized cages when not performing, leading to psychological distress, arthritis, pressure sores, and other debilitating conditions. They’re also denied the opportunity to hibernate, which can result in behavioural and psychological issues.

For more information, please visit Manasseh’s painting for PETA and photos from the exhibition are available upon request.