This artist paints the largest human chain in the world: A symbol of mutual aid and benevolence (photos)
Sylvie Claire / Mars 12, 2021
For more than three hours, and despite the 41 degrees, Saype, a world-renowned French land-artist , has been working with a paint gun to transform a playground in the lakeside city of Ganvié into a work of art. As he constantly moves towards the paint buckets, the grass on which he sprays the paint is transformed.
From green, it turns to grey, then to black, and shapes appear. Around, fishermen, fish sellers and kids from the lake perched on stilts observe the scene with a certain astonishment. In the sky, a drone flies to take videos. No one knows yet what the man is doing, says Sonagnon Dagbédji, his gaze fixed on the artist's work. The 33-year-old resident has seen artists paint on canvases at the Ganvié gallery before. But a painting on the ground is the first time in my life.
The fresco is not the only attraction. The artist himself is an object of curiosity: To see a white man come and draw figures on the ground in Ganvié is an event, says Sokin Agodokpédji. We have been told that the best is yet to come, so we wait, says a 25-year-old fisherman with a cheerful look on his face .
The largest human chain in the world
Finally, the inhabitants discover on a small screen the images taken by the drone: seen from the sky, the painting spots take all their relief and actually draw two interlaced hands. This work is part of a much larger project, symbolically creating the largest human chain in the world, explains the artist, whose real name is Guillaume Legros.
Starting from the Champs de Mars in Paris, these intertwined hands have passed through Andorra, Berlin, Geneva, Ouagadougou, Yamoussoukro, Turin, Istanbul and Cape Town before Benin, the tenth stage. It is a symbol of mutual aid and benevolence between peoples to try to create bridges, says the artist.