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Fossil Rim Wildlife Center

Fossil Rim is a local animal center that supports animals at risk and performs groundbreaking research benefiting animal conservation. They encourage visitors to learn from their experiences with animals and value our relationships with nature.

On December 13th, Paul Dorman opened the doors to his home for an art auction and launch party for Kari Breen and Louise Simone of Kari Lou Art. Endangered animals inspired the featured paintings, and a portion of the proceeds went to benefit Fossil Rim Wildlife Center. Kari and Louise launched their wildlife collection to bring much-needed awareness to the conservation efforts of Fossil Rim Wildlife Center. The two artists united efforts with Fossil Rim’s development officer, Courtney Kennebeck, to kick off Fossil Rim’s fundraising campaign for the new Veterinary Hospital. The evening was sponsored by Earth x, founded by Trammell Crow. 

Italian artist, Louise Simone, joined with local pet photographer and artist Kari Breen to create Kari Lou Art. Kari met Louise and Joseph Simone at their photography class over 20 years ago, and the three became fast friends. They have since traveled together all over the United States, Canada, and Europe studying art and photography. Although known for portraits and paintings of domestic pets, Kari Lou Art also has a western, endangered, and wildlife animal art collection. A portion of all proceeds from each art collection is donated to benefit animals. 

   Kari and Louise wanted to launch their endangered animal collection during an evening they dedicated to Fossil Rim. Fossil Rim Wildlife Center not only has a drive-through road featuring wildlife species, but they’re also large contributors in the protection against the extinction of endangered animals. The rhino painting featuring one of Fossil Rim’s rhino with her calf was created to shed light on this beautiful animal. The two African species are being decimated by poaching, with four rhino killed every day. Every rhino born in captivity is a 140lb insurance package against extinction, and Fossil Rim is good at producing baby rhinos. With three calves born in the last two years, we can be sure they’ll have more on the way soon.  

   Among nearly a dozen Kari Lou Art paintings of zebra, aoudad, elephant, and giraffe, to name a few, the cheetah painting simply titled “Bruce” was a crowd favorite. Hand raised by Fossil Rim’s carnivore curator, Bruce was a prolific breeder and had 19 offspring and has 20 grandkids. Before recently passing away, Bruce was a favorite at Fossil Rim. Over the last 30 years, 196 cheetahs have been born at Fossil Rim, making it one of the top breeding centers in the country. Wild cheetah populations are declining precipitously, with only about 7500 now existing.

   “Should my Goddaughter one day choose to have children, I don’t want them to speak of the rhino the way we speak of the dinosaur in the past tense. I feel a deep connection to Fossil Rim and to this earth in which we live. I want to do all I can to help protect her animals and our environment.” – Kari Breen

   Kari and Louise are grateful to everyone that helped them bring the evening together and for the donations made by art purchases and donations to Fossil Rim. They would like to encourage everyone to take a trip out to Fossil Rim or to make a donation towards their new hospital. A special thanks to Paul Dorman and Earth x for hosting the evening and for the sponsorship.

   EarthX is an international environmental nonprofit connecting a global community to create a sustainable world for all life and future generations. Their vision is to be the leading global connector and environmental forum to positively impact our world for a sustainable future. The EarthX three-day annual event is held in Dallas in April.

   If interested in commissioning your own animal painting or for information on limited edition prints of the evening’s featured paintings, please contact Kari Breen at karibreeninc@gmail.com  

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