sue@ruaha.com | PO Box 369, Ruaha National Park, Iringa, Tanzania

All content © 1994-2019 Sue Stolberger

Life in Ruaha

I am an artist and I've have lived under canvas in wonderful wild places for the past 36 years. I feel incredibly privileged to do so and for the past 25 years my partner Rob Glen and I have been living and working in Ruaha National Park, Tanzania.

 

Four years after I was born in Jamaica, my parents moved to Tanzania, East Africa. I grew up enjoying the pristine beaches north of Dar es Salaam, and often traveled with my parents to Tanzania's wonderful game parks during the holidays. These trips into the wilderness were a great influence on my desire to make a career from art and wildlife.

 

I began painting seriously after leaving school and at the age of eighteen held my first exhibition in Nairobi, Kenya. By the time I was 22, I'd had decided to make a career as a wildlife artist, and so took myself off to Italy to learn what I could from the great masters. I remained there for two years, and the knowledge and experience I gained in Italy only served to fuel my dream.

 

Everything was funded by selling paintings, and I finally returned to East Africa where my adventures in the bush - paint brushes in hand - began. Alone in my jeep, I ventured into the wildest of places - places I thought would be interesting - continuing to develop my artistic skills by sketching and painting from life. The more remote and inaccessible the places were, the more I enjoyed it. My quest for adventure in the African bush, coupled with my desire to paint, has given me a rich and fulfilling life, overflowing with wonderful experiences and joy.

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When I first moved to Ruaha, I lived in a camp on the banks of the Great Ruaha River. In 2006, this camp was drastically changed by the falling of a tree, right onto my kitchen. The tree had been a major feature of the camp, providing shade and attracting many birds. Without it, the location just wasn't the same, so Rob and I, with the permission of the park, decided to relocate to a more remote part of Ruaha called Magangwe.

 

The peace and solitude of this remote area is not only conducive to painting but is the best way to learn from and observe the vast array of wildlife that surrounds my home. I'm always sketching, and never cease to be inspired and enthralled by the diversity of light, colour, pattern and design that nature conjures up.

Contact details

If you want to contact me please either email me at sue@ruaha.com or write to me at P.O. Box 369, Ruaha National Park, Iringa, Tanzania. Please note that we live in the middle of a wilderness where there is a poor internet connection, so if you email, it may be some time before you get a reply.

We are extremely privileged to be living in this paradise. We sincerely thank Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA) for helping us realise this dream and for understanding the role that wildlife art plays in the conservation arena. They have been helpful and supportive and we congratulate them on the excellent way they manage their Parks.