Bubbles, the former pet chimpanzee of the late Micheal Jackson, has made his way back the mainstream with a special art show featuring some of his work.
The Miami Herald reports Bubbles and artwork from other chimps at the Center for Great Apes will be featured in an art exhibit titled, “Apes That Paint.” Proceeds from the 10-day show will go to the center, which cares for chimps and orangoutangs from an array of places like the entertainment world, research or the exotic pet trade. Founder Patti Ragan says despite Bubbles former lavish life, the animal has grown a liking to the environment.
Bubbles, 34, was sent to a California sanctuary in 2004 after he became unsuitable to live among Jackson and his children. He was then sent to the Center for Great Apes after the sanctuary closed down in 2005. “They have different tastes, just like humans,” Ragan said. “Some don’t like to paint. Others get interested in it and paint and paint and paint. Painting is just one of many enrichment activities that helps them rehabilitate from their time in captivity.”
There have been books and films about Jackson’s friendship with Bubbles but a new project came to light during the Cannes Film Festival. In May it was reported that Netflix obtained the rights to a stop-motion animated series about Bubbles’ life. Variety notes the sale was just under $20 million.
Shortly after the Netflix purchase was made public, Jackson’s family released a statement condemning the project. “To clear up any confusion or misperceptions about unsanctioned Michael Jackson projects currently in the news — including a Lifetime television movie and an animated film script recently purchased by Netflix — the Estate of Michael Jackson does not license or permit the use of any rights it owns, including to Michael’s music, images, video and films, for use in unauthorized works seeking to exploit Michael’s legacy,” the statement reads. “The Estate itself has numerous projects in development, all of which respect, honor and celebrate Michael’s life and legacy along with his extraordinary artistry that touched fans throughout the world. When the executors are ready to announce them, they will. As Michael said countless times about his own work, the quality goes in before the name goes on.”
The “Apes That Paint” exhibit will kick off July 21 at the Frames USA & Art Gallery.
Find out more information here.