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1 November 2008 Pierre Dandelot (2007)

Pierre Dandelot, who died in 2007, was a superb painter, sculptor and taxidermist of animals, especially primates. In “A Field Guide to the Larger Mammals of Africa” (1970), his colour paintings and black-and-white drawings, complementing the text by Jean Dorst, established the precedent that beautiful yet accurate artwork can reveal as much or more about an animal as can a photograph—thus starting a tradition which is still today upheld by notable artists such as Stephen Nash. Pierre was enthusiastic about the animals themselves, and even published a few papers on the taxonomy of African monkeys, in which, as an artist, he showed that he was able to detect significant features which had been missed by standard taxonomists: as he put it, “ils n'ont pas l'oeil” (“they do not have the eye”).

Colin P. Groves, Canberra, Australia

Sketches by Pierre Dandelot. Faces of red colobus monkeys—comparing badius and waldronae. Original with Colin P. Groves.


Sketches by Pierre Dandelot. Angola colobus, Colobus angolensis. Top left. Labeled “angolensis, adolfi-frederici and palliatus”. The form adolfi-frederici is considered a junior synonym of C. a. ruwenzorii by Groves (2001, Primate Taxonomy, Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC). Groves (2001) lists the form palliatus as a subspecies of Colobus angolensis. Top right. Labeled angolensis. Bottom left and right. Labeled cottoni. Considered a subspecies of C. angolensis by Groves (2001). Original with Colin P. Groves.


Sketches by Pierre Dandelot. Three black and white colobus, labeled C.[olobus] ab.[yssinicus] uelensis [sic] male (center and left) and C.[olobus] ab.[yssinicus] kikuyuensis female Aberdares Mts. (right). Groves (2001, Primate Taxonomy, Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC) places both as subspecies of Colobus guereza; the former, as uellensis Matschie, as a junior synonym of C. g. occidentalis. Original with Colin P. Groves.


Sketches by Pierre Dandelot. Black-and-white colobus leaping. Original with Colin P. Groves.

"Pierre Dandelot (2007)," Primate Conservation 23(1), 141-142, (1 November 2008).
Published: 1 November 2008

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