Fort Pierce chimp, Cheetah, wins $10,000 art contest

FORT PIERCE, Fla. (AP) -- A Fort Pierce chimpanzee is now a prize-winning artist.

Cheetah won $10,000 for the Save the Chimps sanctuary where he lives by winning an art contest for chimps sponsored by the Humane Society of the United States. He beat out five other chimps from across the nation.

The Treasure Coast Newspapers reported Monday that the 40-year-old chimp's painting of yellow, red and blue strokes placed second in the competition, winning $5,000. His artwork also was selected as a favorite by famed primatologist and anthropologist Jane Goodall, winning an additional $5,000.

Cheetah had lived alone in a laboratory for 13 years and was subjected to more than 400 liver biopsies before being rescued by Save the Chimps in 2002. About 250 rescued chimps live at the facility.

On the Save the Chimps website, it states that "Cheetah is an artist and a temperamental one at that! He can go for weeks refusing to paint, but when he finds his muse, he throws himself into his work, creating colorful and expressive paintings that often spill off the canvas and onto the walls and floors of his home!"

Cheetah often has original art work for sale on the sanctuary's online gift shop .

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Information from: The (Fort Pierce, Fla.) Tribune, http://www.stluciecounty.com

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