Do elephants adore painting? Are they better informed?

Elephants like being original. As long as they are not forced to undertake tasks they do not like to do, they will swiftly gain talents in a variety of areas, including painting.

Elephants are extremely clever and generally creative nonetheless, painting on an easel with a brush in their trunks is not something that has been observed in the environment.

Elephant painting in Thailand began in 1998 when Richard Lair asked the conceptual art collaboration of Vitaly Komar and Alexander Melamid to teach chosen elephants at the Thai Elephant Conservation Center to paint.Elephants

have done this before in over 20 zoos across the world, but this was the first time in Thailand, and they were the first to bring this practice to the notice of the media.

As a result, all aspiring elephant painters must first attend school to learn how to draw.The mahouts with the most experience in elephant drawing now do all of the instructing. It just takes one day to see if the elephant is truly

interested in the activity and has any artistic talent. After the most potential pupils are chosen, they are trained for up until a week before being recognized artists.

They are introduced by first demonstrating how to wield a brush. While some artists reflexively curl the trunk around the brush, at the Center, the best approach is to hold the brush in the ‘nostril’ at the end of the trunk.

which allows the artist more range of movement for the brushstrokes. The paintbrush is customized for this purpose so that it has the proper length and thickness to grip comfortably without causing discomfort.

Then they are introduced to the easel and shown how near they should stand to it in order to properly extend their trunk. Finally, they are supervised by the mahout (just during training) in applying the brush to the paper. Some

painters adapt more quickly than others, but all require time and support to learn how to apply paint within the
limitations of the paper and to establish a brushstroke style that suits them. During training, the artist’s unique

instinctual style emerges. No two elephant painters have the same style, and their style, like that of human artists, grows and matures through time. Forcing the elephant to learn to paint is completely unnecessary.

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