What An Artful Pachyderm Nose


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From The Daily Mail [U.K]

This is so easy, a human could do it! The amazing elephant that paints from life

By Mail Foreign Service
UPDATED: 05:48 EST, 9 January 2009

Oh dear, Lankam the elephant doesn’t seem to have got the hang of being an artist.

For a start, his paintings actually resemble their subjects.

Even more unforgivably, his most expensive work sold for just £20,000 – barely enough to keep Damien Hirst in formaldehyde.

Lankam, an 11-year-old male Asian elephant, is one of a group of artistically inclined animals at the Maesa Camp in Chiang Mai, north Thailand, which have created hundreds of paintings.


First steps: Inspiration strikes Lankam


Pachyderm Picasso: He delicately daubs the canvas


Unforgettable art: But did the elephant paint this from memory?

Elephant painting
The finished article

This simple representation of a vase of flowers will sell for 2,000 baht (around £38).

The money helps to fund the sanctuary where the elephants – many of which used to be owned by logging companies – now live.

Each year thousands of tourists travel to the region to witness the amazing talents of the elephants.

As well as painting, they also play football and basketball.

Swedish photographer Bronek Kaminski, who stumbled across the park, said: ‘I was amazed by the elephants.

‘They hold the brush in their trunk and paint as though it is second nature. Each stroke is so considered it is quite unbelievable.’

In 2004, Lankam joined seven fellow elephants to create a record-breaking oil painting.

Measuring 8ft wide and 39ft long, the piece was sold for 1.5million baht (£20,000) to a Thai businesswoman living in California.


2 thoughts on “What An Artful Pachyderm Nose

  1. Elephants, like most herbivores, have sytioimbc bacteria in their gut that helps them break down their food. They are not born with these bacteria the only way for a calf to get them is to eat the faeces of its mother or other elephants. Some of the bacteria are excreted with the faeces, and by eating them the calf acquires the essential bacteria.Also, an elephant’s digestive system is not very efficient. What comes out is not that much different from what goes in it still contains some nutritional value that the gut failed to extract. Therefore, an elephant can eat another elephant’s (or its own) dung and gain some good from it. In order to compensate for this digestive inefficiency, elephants have to eat almost round the clock to ensure they get enough nutrition from their food.

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