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Artist: Sue Coe’s Sheep of Fools
Artist Sue Coe
takes us on a tour of a world few know or want to know—the live transport of sheep across the ocean from Australia
to the Middle East. Australian sheep suffer one of the most harrowing
experiences imaginable: thousands packed tightly into old freighters
on a voyage lasting for weeks, without food or water, for their
final destination—ritual slaughter. Through powerful images,
Sheep of Fools tells the story of their experience, before, after
and during the voyage.
Not one to shy away from misery, Sue Coe’s art helps us imagine the unimaginable.
Rows of animals restrained for the abhorrent but routine mulesing process (the
cutting of swaths of skin in the genital region as a cheap infection deterrent).
On board: newborn sheep stuffed hind legs first into mincers; a ship’s
cargo of sheep and goats abandoned by the crew to helplessly drown when the
boat catches fire.
Sheep of Fools is on exhibit at New York’s Galerie St. Etienne, opening
September 20th and on display through November 5th. It is also formulated into
an illustrated storybook, due out in September from Fantagraphics. Here Satya presents a selection of Coe’s images, reproduced with kind permission
from the artist.
See the exhibit at Galerie St. Etienne, 24 W. 57th Street, Manhattan. For information,
contact (212) 245-6734 or www.gseart.com.—C.C.