‘The Spirit of the Hunt’

Olson Library hosting multimedia art exhibit

”Rebuilding the Great Lakes Wolf,” a driftwood art piece by Catherine Plank, is on display at an exhibit titled “The Spirit of the Hunt” at Northern Michigan University’s Lydia Olson Library. The exhibit runs through Dec. 10. (Photo courtesy of NMU)

MARQUETTE — Northern Michigan University’s Lydia Olson Library is hosting a multimedia art exhibit titled “The Spirit of the Hunt,” presented in collaboration with Project Coyote.

Curated by Catherine Plank, a University of Michigan graduate student, the exhibit is intended to promote discussion while highlighting the values of wolves and other wildlife in the Great Lakes region.


Project Coyote is a national nonprofit based in Northern California whose mission is to promote compassionate conservation and coexistence between people and wildlife through education, science and advocacy.

In an email, Plank said she is completing a master of science degree in ecosystem science and management with the aspiration of working in wildlife conservation and reserve planning.

This artwork by Ned Gannon is part of “The Spirit of the Hunt” display at Northern Michigan University’s Lydia Olson Library. The purpose of the exhibit is to raise awareness of the roles of wolves and other wildlife in the Great Lakes region. (Photo courtesy of NMU)

“The Spirit of the Hunt exhibit was inspired by the wolf hunts in our neighboring states along with proposed Michigan legislation promoting a wolf hunt,” Plank said. “I was extremely frustrated by the immediate wolf hunts that took place in response to the delisting of the gray wolf from the Endangered Species Act.

“There seems to be two extreme opinions on the management of wolves but I think we can reach a compromise if we value and attempt to understand one another’s views.”

She said her goal is to inspire the public to see native predators as a valuable part of the local ecosystems.

“I am trying to show this perspective to Michigan residents in hopes of starting a conversation among citizens on how wolf and coyote populations should be managed,” Plank said.

Plank is collaborating with the non-profit Project Coyote to promote coexistence with wolves and coyotes in Michigan.

“Together we hope to educate the public on ways to resolve potential human-wildlife conflict and Project Coyote’s current petition to end killing contests,” she said.

All of the artwork on display was generously donated by artists, she said.

“Thankfully, many artists value carnivore conservation and were willing to donate their works,” said Plank, who noted that after being displayed in the exhibit in Houghton and Marquette, the art will be sold in Lansing, with all profits going to Project Coyote.

Leslie Warren, NMU interim associate provost and dean of library and instructional support, said in an email, “I understand that wolf hunting is a controversial topic in the Upper Peninsula. We’re hosting this exhibit to spark conversation. In addition to the exhibit, Olson Library created a bibliography about wolf ecology and wolf legislation in order to have a neutral resource for learning. I encourage everyone to review the books and articles that are listed.”

The exhibit runs through Dec. 10. It can be viewed during Olson Library’s open hours, typically 7:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. The library will be closed Thursday to Nov. 27. The library’s resource page, which can be found at https://lib.nmu.edu/help/resource-guides/subject-guide/wolves, has relevant wolf research to accompany the multimedia presentation.

For more information on Project Coyote, visit www.projectcoyote.org.


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