Now Pigcasso's got a New Yorker piggybacking on her success


Now Pigcasso's got a New Yorker piggybacking on her success

Gerry's got a long way to go before he reaches her levels of artistry, but his work is nothing to snort at

Senior reporter

Pigcasso, the painting porker, has inspired a New York potbelly pig to follow in her hooves.
Gerry, who belongs to New Yorker Peter Gargiulo, Pigcasso’s monthly caramel popcorn benefactor and collector of her art, has also taken to creating art, in a similar vein to the Franschhoek porcine artist. Except Gerry uses his snout instead of a paintbrush.
The Sunday Times revealed this week how Pigcasso, an abstract expressionist, has become the first nonhuman in the world to be commissioned by the Swatch Group to create designs for its funky collection of watches.The two-and-a-half-year-old heavyweight has earned more than R1m for her owner Joanne Lefson – who ploughs the proceeds from the paintings into her Franschhoek Farm Sanctuary – an organisation that rescues farm animals and draws attention to those raised on factory farms.
Lefson rescued the pig from becoming the filling in a sandwich when she was six months old. Since then, Pigcasso – who displayed talent from the outset when she picked up a paintbrush instead of a ball – has generated several works that have been sold to collectors locally and abroad.Swatch first learned about Pigcasso following her debut exhibition appropriately named Oink, at the V&A Waterfront earlier this year, where she took to the pink carpet.
Lefson told Times Select on Monday that Gargiulo’s pet pig Gerry had also produced a few works, but still not as many as Pigcasso’s 71 originals and 112 prints.
“Peter was the very first foreign online buyer. He bought a piece last year, when the British press first reported about her work.
“The reason why Peter was so excited about Pigcasso, is that he has a pig himself, who is like a dog to him. He is very attached to Gerry. He sent regular updates to Pigcasso via his pig, after buying some of her artwork.
“It’s very amusing the information he sends to Pigcasso, literally every week from Gerry. Peter also picked up that Pigcasso’s favourite food is caramel popcorn, which he sends amongst other gifts and items on a monthly basis.“Inspired by Pigcasso, Gerry now also does a bit of painting. What Gerry now does to try an emulate the antics of Pigcasso is paint with his snout.
“Gerry has sent a painting to Pigcasso. Peter is definitely Pigcasso’s biggest fan, and is planning to visit later this year.”
Lefson is expecting a huge consignment of caramel popcorn soon.
After reading about Pigcasso’s Swatch contract, Gargiulo sent a message to Lefson: “Since Gerry read about Pigcasso’s newest contract, he said that he wants a Mercedes van also [which Lefson uses to transport Pigcasso around]. I told him that my Toyota Rav4 was good enough for him,” said Gargiulo.
Lefson believes Gerry has “potential talent”.
“But let’s just say it may take his art a little longer than Pigcasso’s to hang in the Paris Museum of Modern Art.”

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