The ENDANGERED Fine Art and Photography Exhibition runs Wednesday to Saturday at the Dade Heritage Trust building.
This is Lindsey Matheson’s fifth year hosting this exhibit which aims to raise donations for the Center for Great Apes in Wauchula, the only great ape sanctuary in North America.
The center rescues domesticated apes, many coming from show business.
Matheson said the animals do not have the social skills to live in the wild and have to stay in the preserve for their safety.
The art in the exhibit is selected by three volunteer judges who reviewed over 500 worldwide online submissions.
All proceeds from the contest entry fee go to the center, as well as 30 percent of the price of any art sold.
The cost of supporting an ape is about $20,000 dollars a year, said Matheson. The preserve houses about 50 apes.
New to the exhibit is ArtTalks. Speakers include representatives from the Duane Morris law firm and Ron Magill, the communications and media relations director for Zoo Miami.
The Duane Morris attorneys will provide a seminar on creative laws on Thursday.
“Artists need help protecting their work,” Matheson said.
Magill, whose art is featured in the exhibition, will be speaking about his experiences and work in Africa on Saturday.
Miami Club Rum is also sponsoring events on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday by serving its new “Miami Club Cuba Coffee Liquor.”
Phoenix Marks, a nature photographer, has volunteered at the exhibit for the last four years helping to install the pieces. Some of her work will appear in this year’s exhibition.
She said that her background in photojournalism helps her put together the show in a way that comes alive for the public.
“[These pieces] together tell a bigger story,” Marks said.
Matheson and Marks said they hope to educate the public, especially younger people, on the dangers of any species going extinct.
“Art opens people’s hearts in a way that words can’t reach,” said Matheson.