Pablo Picasso once famously declared that “the purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.”
The Spaniard probably never imagined that the sentiment would one day be applied to a paint brush-wielding pig but it nevertheless rings true – because the story of Pigcasso the painter pig is one for the soul.
Saved from slaughter as a young sow, Pigcasso arrived at her South African animal sanctuary home as a scared little piglet.
It’s not exactly difficult to understand why – bred to be slaughtered at a pig farm, she was four weeks old and had been living in squalid conditions, awaiting death, when sanctuary owner Joanne Lefson discovered her and purchased her on the spot.
Due to be killed in September of last year, by October Lefson had discovered Pigcasso’s surprising talent for art, after placing some balls and paint brushes in her pen.
The fast-growing sow was immediately drawn to the bristles of the brushes and, as Lefson soon discovered, this soon developed into a genuine ability to paint.
While it goes without saying that the pieces Pigcasso produces are abstract to say the least, it hasn’t stopped her work from fetching big money.
Pieces from the prize pig have sold for anything from $280 to a whopping $2,000.
It’s all for a good cause too, with the funds raised going towards the upkeep and improvement of the South African Farm Sanctuary where Pigcasso lives.
Speaking to ITV, Lefson explained the other important message of Pigcasso’s work.
“Pigcasso wants to help consumers make the connection between what they eat and the life of an amazing individual, and hopefully inspire them to make kinder more compassionate choices at the supermarket,” she said.
For now, she continues to protest against the conditions that see female pigs kept in solitary cells during pregnancy in South Africa, rather than in group pens.
Pigcasso’s work can be purchased over at the Sanctuary website today. Get it sooner, rather than later – because this stuff is hot to trot.
Loaded staff writer Jack Beresford has produced content for Lad Bible, Axonn Media and a variety of online sports and news media outlets.