LONDON, UK / ACCESSWIRE / July 27, 2022 / Exclusive artwork of Christian the lion, who spent his early years in a Chelsea flat before being rehabilitated into the wild in Kenya, is being sold as NFTs (non-fungible tokens) for the first time.
Photographer Derek Cattani is partnering with charity LionAid and Alamy, the world's most inclusive content platform, to tell the remarkable story of Christian more than 50 years on.
Christian was bought from the zoological department of Harrods in 1969 by Australians Anthony ‘Ace' Bourke and John Rendall. They kept Christian in a flat above their furniture shop Sophisticat on Kings Road in the Chelsea area of London.
Bourke and Rendall made arrangements with George Adamson to rehabilitate Christian into the wild and he began a new life in Kenya in 1970. The remarkable video of Bourke and Rendall visiting Christian in 1971 has received an estimated 100 million views across social media platforms.
Christian the lion, who spent his early years in a Chelsea flat before being rehabilitated into the wild in Kenya, is being sold as NFTs (non-fungible tokens) for the first time.
Now four images of Christian in four different colours are being sold as NFTs to allow people to own a part of the story. Investors will also receive a framed physical print of each image and a copy of Christian The Lion - The Illustrated Legacy, an illustrated book signed by Cattani. A percentage of the proceeds will go to the LionAid charity.
Derek Cattani, the photographer who took the pictures of Christian and owns the copyright, said: 'John and Ace wanted me to capture Christian as the friendly and amazingly inquisitive lion he really was. Christian would wander around the flat and I would have great fun posing him with his paws on top of the television, playing with chicks for a famous Easter newspaper publication, or even sitting in the back of a convertible car driving down the Kings Road in Chelsea. These NFTs take you back to a scene you could never imagine now - a lion living in a central London apartment.'
A percentage of the proceeds from the sale of the NFTs will go to LionAid, a UK charity which works around the world to save lions and end the decline of the wild lion population. LionAid engages with politicians and decision-makers in the UK, Europe and Africa to highlight the plight of lions and end trophy hunting.
The charity also works with tribespeople to prevent humans coming into conflict with lions. One example of its work is to install flashing lights around livestock pens, which lions perceive as men with torches and stay away from the villagers' animals.
Chris Macsween, Director and Co-Founder of LionAid, said: 'Christian's story is highly unusual and one we are never likely to see again. Unfortunately, the situation for lions has deteriorated since Ace and John rewilded Christian 50 years ago. There are now fewer than 10,000 lions in the wild, with trophy hunting and conflict with humans further eroding the population. The funds we receive from these NFTs will support our work to encourage governments to bring in laws to stop the import of trophy hunted animals, and with local tribespeople to help them coexist with wild lions.'
Emily Shelley, Managing Director of Alamy, said: 'We receive tens of thousands of pictures from contributors from around the world every day, however few are as remarkable as a lion roaming around a London flat. These incredible images supplied by the photographer, Derek Cattani, will be the first NFTs sold by Alamy. We're proud to give people a way to own a small piece of Christian's story, while also supporting LionAid as they protect the wild lions of today.'
The NFTs will go on sale on 27th July 2022 on the Opensea NFT platform. To place a bid, click here.
Notes to editors:
Further images of the NFTs are available to illustrate this story.
The photographer, Derek Cattani, is available for interview on request.
For further information, please contact:
Operations Director - Alamy
Interim Communications Lead - PA Media Group
Alamy is a global digital platform for creatives looking for fresh and inclusive content. Powered by Create search, Alamy delivers fast, catalogued search results, which include editorial photos, vectors, 360-degree images and videos from individual photographers, picture agencies and archives. Its global contributor base supplies upwards of 150,000 new images a day.
Founded in 1999, Alamy focuses on the infinite and diverse opportunities of Owning the Blank Page. Its collections offer creative and editorial content sourced from a network of over 100,000 photographers, content creators and 650 contributing agencies and archives. Alamy electrifies creativity by acting as a catalyst for creators and contributors. With three global sales hubs, Alamy serves a global customer base covering the news, publishing, advertising, design, corporate and broadcast sectors. Alamy's headquarters are in Oxfordshire, United Kingdom. It has offices in London, the United States and India, as well as a team based in Australia. In February 2020, Alamy was acquired by PA Media Group, the UK-based news and information business.
About PA Media Group
PA Media Group comprises a diverse portfolio of specialist media companies, spanning news & information, technology and communications services.
Its flagship brand, PA Media, is the UK and Ireland's leading news agency. Alongside PA Media, the Group is also the parent company of content library Alamy, broadcast tech firm Globelynx, strategic marketing consultancy Sticky Content, video streaming business StreamAMG, PA Betting Services, PA Training and PA TV Metadata.
PA Media Group has 20 shareholders, made up mainly of UK news and media businesses. The largest shareholders include DMGT plc, Informa plc, News UK plc and Reach plc.
SOURCE: PA Media Group
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