Pierre Brassau, The Monkey Painter Who Fooled the Art World


Modern art gets a lot of flak for being pretentious and adored by people who should never stop being punched in the neck and a lot of it is deserved, as we’re about to explain. Like, well, everyone, journalist, Åke Axelsson was tired of seeing people fawn over daubs of paint haphazardly thrown at a piece of canvas. So he decided to see if he could fool them by having a chimp literally fling paint at an easel and call it art. To accomplish this, Axelsson first enlisted the help of a chimp named, Peter, however, to sufficiently fool the art world he gave Peter the much more pretentious (French) name of, Pierre Brassau.

He even smokes like a Frenchman.

He even smokes like a Frenchman.

After that, Axelsson then hailed Peter’s work which we should point out would have been done entirely in faeces if he hadn’t been given paint, as the work of a lost master of French art. And you better believe people ate that up, critics from miles around came to praise the work of the great Pierre Brassau. In fact, only one critic had a negative word to say about Peter, insisting that “only an ape could have done this” in reference to his art. Here’s the best bit though, after the hoax was revealed, people still said Peter’s work was the artistic equivalent of the bomb, and one guy even up and bought one of his paintings to hang on his wall. Now just sit for a second and realise how much more awesome art would be if it was only done by monkeys. Preferably wearing suits.


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