Wim Delvoye is an artist, enjoys raising, taking care of, and tattooing pigs. Yes, he tattoos the entire backs of pigs. Wim Delvoye was born in Wervik, Belgium in 1965. He’s since become well-known in the art community for his provocative works from a range of rather unconventional materials, including fecal matter. People actually pay many thousands of dollars to adopt or purchase a tattooed pig. As much as $160,000. Delvoye started this around 1997 and claims he does this to “provoke a discussion of what art truly is“.
So, starting a pig farm outside Beijing, he does his pig tattooing. Pigs skin is the most similar to humans. You can imagine the Animal Right Activists being concerned over the potential of this being borderline animal abuse. But it doesn’t seem to hurt the animals. From what I saw, they are actually well taken care of. But that doesn’t mean it’s not weird!
The tattoos are based off of Delavoye’s drawings, mostly references to Western iconography such as the Louis Vuitton monogram and characters of Disney films. By putting these iconic images on a pigskin, the artist takes away their commercial value. They become pure decoration – their only purpose is seemingly to shock.
Again, people do pay as much as $160k for a tattooed pig. Pigs live quite a long time, but when they do eventually pass away, Delvoye sends them their canvas. ‘Perfect for framing”. He cuts off the dried hide from the pig when they’ve passed on and frames it. Yeah, that is a little too “Hannibal Lector “esq for my taste. Probably why he continues to disturb many art critics and consumers across the globe.