Thomas A. Gieseke - Illustration / Art
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"Coltan Congo"

Coltan Congo

Coltan is a portmanteau for a metallic ore which contains the rare elements of COLumbium (now called niobium) and TANtalum. Both metals are vital to the production of capacitors in cell phones as well as other electronic devices produced these days.

Coltan occurs on every continent in varying degrees. A large source for it is in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Unfortunately, due to a lingering political strife in that country, its mining has led to corruption and violence. It is much akin to the “blood diamonds” also from that part of the world.

Aside from the consequences on humans, the rampant, unregulated mining has taken its toll on the environment. Endangered animals, such as gorillas and chimpanzees are losing their habitat. Rainforests are being decimated.

We can no longer afford to be complacent. We need to start questioning from where the *things* in our consumerist society come and the repercussions that go with it. You didn’t really think Hello Kitty just pooped your cell phone out of some pretty pink castle in Neverland, did you?


Giclée prints available
Certified, signed, titled, and numbered on archival paper from an edition of 20. Image size 25” X 18.75” (63.5 cm X 47.625 cm) on 20” X 26” (50.8 cm X 66.04 cm) paper size.
Special online price $140.00
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Original painting available
64" X 48" (162.56 cm X 121.92 cm) Acrylic on canvas, framed.
To purchase original painting, contact Tom regarding shipping and handling costs. Serious inquires only, please.