Tag Archives: Joe Zammit-Lucia


Joe Zammit-Lucia is a very busy man. If you read about him in my last post, you know about his stunning wild animal portraits. He is also a very dedicated and well-known environmentalist. Because of my priorities, when I first started to develop my website, I wanted to link to art as well as environmental blogs.

The Third Ray


Catherin Nelson, Danube Dusk, The Third Ray

In my search, one of the first art/environment blogs that I happened upon was “The Third Ray” (see the blog to find out what the third ray means). The subheading of this site is ART*SUSTAINABILITY* ENVIRONMENT

This blog, created by Zammit-Lucia asks the question of how artists have been involved in the debate about sustainability and how do they continue to be involved. “This blog takes a broad brief, covering works of art that address issues that have suffered from narrow labels such as ‘conservation’, ‘environmentalism’, ‘green’, ‘global warming’, ‘ecology’, ‘environmental art’, or, more nebulously, ‘saving the planet.’”

Igor Zenin, The Third Ray

Igor Zenin, The Third Ray

“The sustainability debate goes beyond issues of environmentalism and conservation to encompass the worlds of business, finance, economics, politics and social institutions.”

The Intersectionist

“The Third Ray,” although very substantial, is not Zammit-Lucia’s main blog, however. His primary blog is the “Intersectionist” and his primary focus is sustainability. One of his posts explained that our culture is focused on rational, data-driven decision-making, instead of imagining how people’s emotional involvement in our sustainability woes may lead to more personal connection and change.

Theintersectioist-Imagination not informaion

The Intersectionist-Imagination Not Information

Even the conservative EPA has a good definition of sustainability.  “Sustainability is based on a simple principle: Everything that we need for our survival and well-being depends, either directly or indirectly, on our natural environment.  Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony.”

Zammit-Lucia also posts for the United Kingdom’s, “The Guardian,” “Self-righteous environmentalism and results-driven management have led to sustainability fatigue. Leaders need to admit we’re at sea and try to refresh sustainability.”

Segmento-the third ray

Segmento-The Third Ray

He also organized and manages the WOLFoundation, a non-profit organization aimed at encouraging dialog and fresh thinking on subjects related to pressing questions in regard to society, politics, business and environment. Its purpose is to find ways to break out of conventional thinking and encourage the imagination. They act as a catalyst for anyone who has fresh ideas on how to improve well-being – sustainably.

He also blogs regularly for Stanford University’s Stanford Social Innovation.

I am sure that I have omitted other projects that he organizes or affects. Although he is very busy getting the word out about the sustainability of our planet, he is known to be a very friendly and social guy.

Charles Fréger-third ray

Charles Fréger, The Third Ray

Joe Zammit-Lucia’s Wild Animal Portraits

Joe Zammit-Lucia photographs wild animals. I first became aware of his stunning work in the January/February, 2006 issue of Camera Arts magazine. I was immediately drawn to the animals in his portraits. They were mesmerizing to me and I found myself staring at them and returning to them many times, almost spellbound by what I was seeing.


King (triptych) (detail), Archival pigment print, © Joe Zammit-Lucia


 Zammit-Lucia considers himself a conceptual artist working with photography to explore issues relating to the human animal.  He is one of the world’s leading animal portrait artists, developing unique ways to use animal portraiture to explore the essence of “animality” and humans’ relations to animals.


In his portraits he wants to convey that individual animals have personalities, character and emotions and that these qualities differ from individual to individual. He wants to powerfully engage the viewer to look at wild animals as treasured individuals and to ask themselves, “Can I relate to this animal as an individual rather than as a mere specimen of species?”

Zammit-Lucia does animal portraiture in order to change the conception that some humans feel that the world is ours and that all other forms of nature are met with a certain amount of disdain and a lack of responsibility.



Majesty, Archival pigment print, © Joe Zammit-Lucia

Through his work he hopes to get people to connect more with wild animals as individuals, much like they would with their pets. He wants to preserve the lives of wild animals by asking human animals to look into the eyes of the animals he photographs, and hopefully see the soul of the individual. Can you see what he sees?

His work has been presented in major public forums  such as the United Nations Headquarters in New York, the National Museum of Natural History in Paris, the United Nations Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, and in private galleries in Europe and the USA. His images were exhibited in Venezia Immagine on the occasion of the Venice Biennale in 2007.


Hunted, Archival pigment print, © Joe Zammit-Lucia

Hunted, Archival pigment print, © Joe Zammit-Lucia


(triptych) (detail), Archival pigment print, © Joe Zammit-Lucia

Vanishing, Archival pigment print, © Joe Zammit-Lucia.

He has served as special adviser to the director general of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and is currently a member of the IUCN Commission for Education and Communication; he is also a member of the advisory board for the College of Arts and Sciences at Florida International University, a board member of the African Rainforest Conservancy, and a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.



Joe Zammit-Lucia

Joe Zammit-Lucia

Zammit-Lucia is both author and photographer of “FIRST STEPS: Conserving Our Environment” based on a United Nations exhibit.