Britain: Thousands of people have stripped and been painted blue as they starred in a huge installation to celebrate Hull’s relationship with the sea.

Hull City Council said 3,200 people took part in the event — the largest of its kind ever to be staged in the UK by New York-based artist Spencer Tunick.

Tunick’s Sea of Hull installation involved participants from 20 countries, including American Stephane Janssen, 80, who has posed for him on 20 previous occasions.

The hundreds who gathered at dawn were daubed with four shades of blue body paint in celebration of Hull’s maritime heritage and then posed for a series of site specific installations around some of the city’s best known historic locations.

These included the former Queens Dock, now a city centre park, the Guildhall and the award-winning Scale Lane swing bridge over the River Hull.

Tunick’s latest work has been commissioned by Hull’s Ferens Art Gallery.

It will be one of the highlights of the gallery’s programme in 2017, when Hull is UK City of Culture.

 

...and more nudity

USA: About 100 naked people gathered to paint the town red — and blue, green, orange, magenta, and neon yellow.

Dozens of artists used the naked bodies as canvases on the third annual NYC Bodypainting Day, which celebrates freedom of artistic expression and body acceptance.

The volunteer models, including Charles Darius, doffed their duds in Manhattan’s Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, outside the United Nations headquarters, for a few hours of painting before boarding double-decker buses and taking their art show throughout the city.

“I enjoy being nude,” said Darius, whose parents are from Europe and took him to nude beaches often when he was a child. “It’s a pleasure to indulge in that enjoyment on a sidewalk in Manhattan.”

Onlookers, many snapping photos and shooting videos on their cellphones, shared words of encouragement with the models, who endured two- or three-hour painting sessions on an overcast day with temperatures in the low 20s.

Artist Andy Golub, who painted bodybuilder Vanessa Adams, created NYC Bodypainting Day as a way to promote human connection through art. He said he and the other artists were creating art inspired by the models’ “inner beauty,” the theme for this year’s event.

Public nudity is legal in the city when it’s for artistic purposes, such as a play, a performance, or an art show. But Golub and model Zoe West were arrested in 2011 during a bodypainting project in Times Square.

West sued over the arrest, and the city paid her a $15,000 settlement.

 

Fare deal

USA: A Boston cab driver who got a $100 (€90) reward from a man who left a backpack containing more than $187,000 in his taxi has been offered a free cruise.

Raymond ‘Buzzy’ MacCausland found the money which had been left behind by a homeless man who had inherited it. Mr MacCausland handed it over to police, who confirmed its rightful owner.

Royal Caribbean offered 72-year-old Mr MacCausland and his girlfriend Sharon King a seven-day trip to the Caribbean, including air fare to Florida, as part of its Ticket To Adventure programme, which rewards people who perform “exceptionally selfless acts”.

 

Forget gnomes

UK: A pensioner has spurned run-of-the-mill gnomes and decorated his garden with two giant gorillas and a towering dinosaur.

Great-granddad Jake Pearson, 73, paid £600 for the 3m-tall fibreglass raptor to stand alongside a pair of gorillas he bought online for £2,000.

The giant animals have turned Jake’s home in Dudley, West Midlands, into a mini-tourist attraction. Local children and neighbours often pose for photos with the animals with the pensioner asking them to donate to Cancer Research.

 

Tower for the night

France: The Eiffel Tower is a must-see for many tourists visiting Paris but for one family this week it also became their home for a night.

Michelle Stevenson won an overnight stay at the famed landmark in a contest organized by vacation rental website HomeAway in which participants were asked: “What would you do if the HomeAway Eiffel Tower apartment was all yours for a night?

The mother of two autistic sons was among four winners treated to a night in the ephemeral luxury apartment on the structure’s first floor with sweeping views of the French capital.

“It was for them because they’re fascinated by the Eiffel Tower, the structure and the lights,” Stevenson said, referring to her sons. “Being autistic, I think the lights is just the big wow factor for them... It’s just something that they’ll never do again.”


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