Story By: Amanda Morales, Sub-Editor: Michael Leidig, Agency: Central European News
The artist known as the ‘American Dali’ has reportedly been murdered at his home in Venezuela at the age of 91.
The lifeless body of Antonio Otazzo, who originally came from Tenerife in the Spanish Canary Islands, was found in his home in the city of Cagua in the northern Venezuelan state of Aragua on 18th July.
According to the Spanish newspaper ABC, a couple with a baby, apparently posing as homeless people, knocked on the victim’s door and he agreed to help them and invited them inside.
At around the same time, the artist’s daughter went to visit him with a family friend when they noticed something suspicious and called the local police.
Otazzo was found dead, reportedly the victim of a knife attack, and the police managed to detain the woman who was still inside the property.
ABC said the man managed to escape while it is unclear what happened to the baby.
The victim’s body will undergo an autopsy to confirm whether he died of stab wounds, as suspected by the police.
The ‘American Dali’ was a painter, sculptor and musician who moved from the Canary Islands to Venezuela in 1954 where he was widely acclaimed.
A portrait of the South American liberator Simon Bolivar called ‘Bolivar Pensante’ (‘Bolivar Thinking’) is among his most famous works.
Otazzo was considered an eccentric and quirky character who called himself a seer, a sorcerer and an enlightened man.
He once said: “I will disappear, like a perfume in the water, like a scent in the air, but my work will remain, like a rebellious prophet who never gave up.”
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