"Jonathan Kingdon’s meticulous observation of wildlife over the course of his lifetime has answered many profound questions about how animals work. He has also explained his findings with dramatic and pioneering artworks that have few if any parallels.”
SIR DAVID ATTENBOROUGH said in 2019 during a private event at the opening of the exhibition “EVOLUTION AS INSPIRATION” at the Museum of Zoology, Cambridge University
Jonathan Kingdon was born 1935 in Tanzania, East Africa. He is a zoologist (an expert on African mammals), science author, and artist (he focuses on taxonomic illustration and biological evolution of Africa’s mammals big and small); a research associate at the University of Oxford, UK.
He is a contributor to The Oxford Book of Modern Science Writing. He was awarded the 1993 Silver Medal of the Zoological Society of London, and was awarded the Royal Geographical Society’s Cherry Kearton Medal and Award in 1998.
ORIGIN AFRICA: Safaris Into Deep Time
Princeton University Press, 25 Jul 2023 - Science - 472 pages
A richly illustrated journey through the evolution of Africa’s extraordinary natural world across deep time Origin Africa is a unique introduction to the natural history and evolution of the most misrepresented continent on Earth. Celebrated evolutionary biologist and artist Jonathan Kingdon, a leading expert on the natural history of Africa, tells this extraordinary story as no one else can. Featuring a wealth of photographs and illustrations, the book is both a visual and narrative feast. Africa is the richest continent, containing every habitat from desert to tropical forest and the widest range of plants and animals found anywhere. It has experienced extraordinary climate fluctuations, meteor bombardment, and cataclysmic volcanic eruptions. Yet life has not only survived but evolved almost countless species. One group of primates evolved out of this crucible and moved out of Africa to dominate every continent on Earth. Africa has properties that ensure that most of human evolution couldn’t have occurred anywhere else. A fascinating story told as never before, Origin Africa chronicles how the natural conditions of Africa enabled a spectacular evolution of plants and animals, including Homo sapiens.