The will to appropriate and dominate nature led to the urban zoos of colonial powers, where the wild and exotic was paraded behind bars. However, by bringing the wild animals closer to the public, their needs also became apparent. From their beginnings then, zoos thus generated their own critique. Creature Comforts, an Oskar winning animation film from Nick Park, is the best example of this. Park has animals in an English zoo, e. g. a lion, a gorilla, a turtle, describe their situation. Their answers inevitably involve a comparison between life in the zoo and life in the wild. Some things are better in the zoo than back home, some things are worse, such as the English weather. The main point, however, is having enough room. “We need space” states the lion concisely and repeatedly.
Nick Park, UK 1989, 5 min, col