When looking at Wilhelm Kuhnert’s oeuvre, one is left with no doubt that the artist was a great lover of wildlife and that he found his subject matter a constant source of inspiration. His great affinity for the African continent and the Far East stemmed from a desire to experience and capture the exotic. A keen and skilled hunter himself, he was fascinated by the raw and uncompromising dance between prey and predator. Kuhnert returned to Africa year after year in the hunt for both game and subjects for his art. Wilhelm Kuhnert received his artistic education under the tutelage of the animal painter Paul Meyerheim in Berlin, where he learned to master the rendering of animal fur, hair and muscles. His extraordinary talent was noticed early on by his teachers, who advised him to dedicate his art to capturing the essence of wildlife. The young artist enthusiastically embraced their advice and in pursuit of his chosen genre, he travelled extensively, spending a significant amount of time in Ceylon and East Africa, where he was captivated by the wild beauty of the landscapes and their equally exotic denizens. At a time when the majority of animal artists were painting their motifs in captivity, Kuhnert distinguished himself from his contemporaries (and indeed his teacher, Meyerheim) by travelling to sketch animals in their natural habitats. During his travels he recorded the dates and places he visited in his diary and made hundreds of charcoal and pencil studies of the animals he saw. Upon returning to Germany, he then completed the works in his studio, drawing upon his experiences and first-hand knowledge gathered from his adventures.