Morphing hands into animals

December 04, 2013 - 4:53:05 am

Italian artist Guido Daniele addressing a press conference on ‘Handimals’ at City Center in the presence of City Center Manager, Anastasia Marapidou and (RIGHT) Daniele displays an elephant painting on his hand. Kammutty V P

BY RAYNALD C RIVERA

DOHA: Italian artist Guido Daniele morphs human hands into animals using his paintbrush to convey the need to save endangered animals from extinction.

Elephant, iguana, horse and fish are some of the 75 types of animals he can create by painting people’s hands. He is featured at a photo exhibition at City Center Doha from today until Saturday.

He calls his creations ‘handimals’ (hand and animals) which, for him, are more than works of art but a powerful medium to send his message of animal protection.

“At this time there are only 1,600 pandas and a few thousand tigers in the world. The elephants are prehistoric; they had been in our world for millions of years but we don’t take care of them; people get money out of their tusks and skin,” he said.

Daniele, who has been a staunch advocate of animal rights, urged people to maintain the balance of life on Earth by ensuring animal protection. As a body painter, he has chosen to paint human hands, a technique he discovered 13 years ago.

“The hands are a very creative part of the body next to the brain. We do everything using our hands. We can construct and destroy using them,” he told The Peninsula yesterday.

He said by painting hands he wanted to encourage people to protect animals, to “give a hand to animals.” He started painting when he was 17, but it was in 2000 that he discovered hand painting which astounded him and everyone who saw his works. “I have done exhibitions in many places, in South and North America, Europe and Africa and everybody told me that it was the first time they saw something so interesting and strange. For this reason I tried to find a way to make not only animals but also architecture and other artistic forms on hands.”

Daniele will be at the first level of the centre opposite Carrefour from 4pm to 5pm and 7pm to 8pm until Saturday to paint animals on mall customers’ hands. “We will pick a customer who would like to have an animal painted on his hand, which takes about an hour. We will also have a programme for children, in which they can try to paint on hands guided by the artist’s daughter to show them what he is doing and why he is doing it — which is to promote animal protection,” said Anastasia Marapidou, the center Manager. She said the event is an initiative of the centre and is free “to raise awareness about nature and animals”.  The Peninsula

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