Tag Archives: “animal abuse”

There’s an ass involved in this exhibit. Spoiler alert: it’s not the donkey

Donkey exhibit image via Their Turn.net
Donkey exhibit image via Their Turn.net

The Frieze art fair in New York has a donkey on display as an “exhibit.”  The “artist” is Maurizio Cattelan.  The donkey is left standing around in an empty room with a chandelier above.  What?  This has no meaning, no message, nothing.  The artist thinks it connects humans to animals.  This couldn’t be further from the truth.  Instead, this donkey is on display, an object for our entertainment.  This is no different than going to a zoo, other than the pointless chandelier.

Many people are up in arms over the welfare of the donkey.  Of course the show promoters argue that the donkey has it “good” and much better than being in a barn.  Then again, are animals meant to just live out their lives in a barn?

This is not the first time animals have been used as “art.”  Last year there were a dozen horses cooped up in a gallery.  And in 2014, tortoises had i-Pads screwed into their shells for an “installation” piece by Cai Guo-Qiang.  These are just recent examples that have made headlines.  Unfortunately, there are others.  In every one of these cases, the artists and the gallery owners all argue that the animals are fine and unharmed.  There is no way that they can know this.  They just issue some sanitary, generic statement to put the public at ease and go about their day.  The animals are not their highest concern.

There is no reason why live animals should be used as art.  If you were to replace the animal with a child, you would get a call from Social Services, so how is it any different for any other living being?  There are ways to get your message across without using live animals.  You’re an artist, get creative and figure out another way.  I paint animals, I focus on our connection to the natural world, and I also deal with difficult issues such as habitat destruction and extinction, just to name a few.

If you really want to make a statement, how about going vegan?  How about not supporting companies that test on animals?  How about rescuing animals rather than using them?  That’s a far greater statement than this so-called art.



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The Pack

I’ve just finished another painting in the “In Our Veins” series. This one is titled “The Pack” and is an acrylic on canvas, 20″ wide by 10″ high. I took “some” photos of the painting as I was working on it from start to finish. Going through them, I just think “UGH!” I’m happy with the end result, but I have to admit that my back, neck, and shoulders took a beating after pouring long hours into this one. For a closer look at the finished piece, visit this direct link: AmyGuidry.com-The Pack.

Original drawing on canvas for "The Pack" by Amy Guidry
Initial rough layer of paint for "The Pack"
Finished rough layer of "The Pack" by Amy Guidry
Next layer of paint is added to the sky, intensifying the color
Sky has another layer of paint added, reaching the desired hue
Clouds are finished and have their final layer of paint added to brighten the whitest areas
Next layer of paint is added to the desert sand to smooth it out
Final layer of paint added to sand to bring out the details
Finishing touches are added to the desert- small rocks are added
Initializing the next layer to the cliffs in the background, starting on the left
Still working my way across the cliffs, adding paint, and then reworking details as I go
Cliffs are now finished, now on to the wolves, going left to right again
Working on wolf #1, adding another layer of paint, then cleaning up details as I go- hair, eyes, mouth, etc.
Wolf #1 just about done, started next layer on wolf 2 before I finish the front leg of wolf 1
Final details to wolf 2 added, then finished up the leg of wolf 1 since those fine hairs need to be added
Adding next layer of paint to wolf 3, focusing on the darkest areas first to build up the colors
Built up the darkest areas, now adding details- hairs along the back- and working in lighter tones
Finished details to wolf 3, now adding next layer to wolf 4, building up dark areas
Next layer of paint on wolf 4 complete, now adding hair detail, and lighter tones
Finished the hair details to wolf 4 as well as the detail in the feet
Finally at the last wolf, adding next layer of paint, adding darker tones
Building up the tones in the last wolf, adding details as well- face, eyes, hairs
Finished piece- "The Pack" by Amy Guidry; (c) Amy Guidry 2011

The Greatest Show on Earth

"Get Your Popcorn! Peanuts! Cruelty!" by Amy Guidry; Copyright Amy Guidry 2008

Well here’s a sneak peek for all my blog fans (hopefully there are a lot of those…).  I was invited to participate in a show for A Bitchin’ Space in Sacramento, California.  The theme was right up my alley.  Maybe [Gale Hart] figured this out by viewing some of my social commentary pieces, but somehow they knew to ask me if I’d like to do a piece for “The Circus Show and Other Atrocities.”  I jumped at the chance since, as a vegan and quasi animal rescue organization (I’ve taken in a lot of homeless animals over the years…), I detest the circus and its treatment of animals.  Soooo, this leads to my latest creation- “Get Your Popcorn!  Peanuts!  Cruelty!”

I toiled over my sketchbook forever coming up with the perfect idea for this show.  I wanted to convey the circus’s cruelty without being gratuitous, either.  I kept thinking of the old animal cracker box I used to get as a kid, the one by Nabisco that came with a string on top of the box to reuse (?) as a Christmas ornament (?).  Then finally I decided to go with that theme, but Amy-ize it with my own sarcastic flavor.  Hence the animals with giant bites taken out of them, and the re-wording of the brand name and description.

So that’s it!  Your official sneak peek at my work.  It’s not even on my website yet (but it will be soon), so in the meantime, check out my other work- www.AmyGuidry.com.  My other social commentary pieces can also be seen in my Painting section of the website.

As for the greatest show on earth, well, obviously I’m not referring to the circus.  The show is “The Circus Show and Other Atrocities” and will open on September 13th at A Bitchin’ Space.  If you can’t make it then, my work and the other 99 artists’ works will still be on display until October 11th.  And yes, this show is the best on earth because it includes artists from the US, UK, and Canada.  You can find the gallery at 2114 19th Street in downtown Sacramento.  You can check out their website at www.abitchinspace.com.