Conservation News

‘Artist Of The Year’ Mystery Painting Up For Auction At SCI 50th Convention

For the first time ever, the Safari Club International will auction off never-before-seen work by the SCI artist of the year during their 50th annual convention in Las Vegas. This year, the honorary title goes to John Banovich, known internationally for his large and dramatic portrayals of wildlife. 

While Banovich’s work has appeared in numerous museums and galleries, one of his best-known pieces is entitled “Once Upon A Time.” The life-size painting of elephants brought much-needed attention to the issue of ivory poaching. 

Banovich described conservation as a major influence on his art. “Now more than ever, we need to expand the message about the vital importance of the world’s natural places and utilize the forceful role that artists can leverage in the efforts to conserve them,” he said. 

The Banovich Wildscapes Foundation has raised money to support and promote habitat protection, science-based wildlife management, and sustainable tourism. “Our natural world is severely threatened, and with this increased pressure, a new paradigm must emerge — artists, conservationists, sportsmen, and environmentalists must come together in areas of overlapping interests,” he said. 

During his more than 25-year career, Banovich has traveled all across Africa pursuing his art. His journeys and vast knowledge inspired the luxury safari venture Banovich Wildscape Travel. They’re designed to immerse guests in Banovich’s world of art and travel, so they leave with profound and meaningful experiences. 

Banovich, who has a studio in Seattle and a gallery in Montana, has been featured in numerous media outlets. In addition to winning the prestigious SCI Artist of the Year Award, he has collaborated with SCI for more than 20+ years. 

Banovich’s mystery piece will be on display and available for purchase at SCI’s 50th Anniversary Convention. The event will be held Jan. 19-22, 2022, at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. Registration is open now at

For 50 years, Safari Club International (SCI) has been the leading defender of the freedom to hunt and supporter of wildlife conservation worldwide. 

SCI is unique in the scope of our ability to defend and advance our freedom to hunt. SCI is the only hunting rights organization with a Washington, D.C.- based international advocacy team and an all-species focus. SCI mobilizes our 152 chapters and affiliate network representing 7.2 million hunters around the world. The conservation projects of SCI’s sister organization, the SCI Foundation, support research, management and rural communities in North America, Africa and Central Asia. In addition, SCI’s Annual Hunters’ Convention is the world’s largest marketplace that celebrates our freedom to hunt.

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