From birth, the bonobos have been reared as a family in a loving environment filled with the creative stimulus that most humans hope to provide their own children. This environment has greatly accelerated the cognitive abilities and social skills of the bonobo.
Attracting many international notables, the scientists at Bonobo Hope have paired Kanzi up with famous anthropologist Nick Toth for experiments in primitive stone tool making techniques. In the end, Kanzi created his own tool-making technique which surprised and impressed all the humans involved.
Panbanishia and Kanzi have made music on drums with Peter Gabriel. Panbanishi has created her own paintings – sparse calligraphic-inspired abstract compositions of brushstrokes and color.
Growing up on 55 undeveloped acres at the Language Research Center in Atlanta, Georgia, the bonobos had access to a number of sites scattered throughout the property — sites with imaginative names such the the A-frame, the Teepee, TreeTop and the Playyard — each was a uniquely designed landmark connected by paths and each had it own lexigram (symbol).
Now at Bonobo Hope Sanctuary, there is the opportunity to develop new interactive art sites that could create a similar network of interaction between traveling humans and bonobos.