A watermelon. Two apples. A plastic duck. His parents’ cat, Didi. Sheldon Cooper from the Big Bang Theory. A pair of sunglasses.

Those are the names of some of Marcello Barenghi’s most recent victims. If you scroll down his Instagram feed, you would be able to list almost endlessly a number of objects, people and animals who have fallen prey to his superhuman ability. He corners them in the dark, freezes and then turns them into motionless paper images.

Or so it would seem. Barenghi’s jawdropping ability to draw extremely lifelike images makes him certainly one of the most remarkable people on the planet, placing him in the category right next to sorcerers and Spiderman. 

Speaking of Spiderman, Barenghi’s drawn him too, right after he drew a bunch of grapes. Nothing is safe, no object is too mundane or too marvelous, he will search it out, he will draw it.

As I scrolled through his Instagram feed again today, I was struck by the familiarity of many of these objects- I may have seen a number of them in my house today, although I probably didn’t pay much mind to them until I saw their likenesses on Mr Barenghi’s Instagram, after which I rushed to hide my most beloved possessions lest they vanish and reappear on an Italian artist’s website.

Such thoughts are potentially alarming though, I have seen people who have been captured into Mr Barenghi’s papers. They include Diego Maradona and Bruce Lee, both deceased. Having departed the surface of the earth, they have reappeared on Mr Barenghi’s Instagram. Quite the coincidence. 

I am wondering what he will draw next. A toothbrush? My mum’s car? Aladin’s carpet? You? Can’t wait to find out!

Categories: art


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