Ollie Dook
    5 THE PAINTING ELEPHANT

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    There is currently an elephant in Thailand that publicly paints images of herself signed with her name, Suda. Videos of the elephant are prolific within the internet, and the spellbinding and undeniably captivating ‘Suda- The Painting Elephant’ has gained 5.5 Million views and 9482 comments in the 9 years following its uploading. The beautiful potential of self-reflection in the elephant is far more appealing than the underlying truth behind this grand illusion. The story of Zeuxis and Parrhasius, and their painting duel explains the potential for human misconception within representational painting fooled by their own expectations. The beauty of Suda’s brushstrokes is shrouded in the dark sadness that reveals itself in the bull hook of the trainer at her side, and the means by which her talents are made possible. Like the digital puppet of this story who is forcibly controlled by the keyframes of its animation, both the real and fake elephants only manage to reveal the mechanical control they are under.

    Ollie Dook's Animal Stories-series takes multiple strands of reoccurring and memetic ideas of the animal image that are primarily accessed and shared via the means of YouTube, and re-told in an episodic tale harking back to the traditions of Disney’s ‘Silly Symphony’ series.

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