You mean that if you were to photograph that view, print it well, frame and display it, that you would not consider that you'd accomplished something of at least some artistic merit?
I do wish to clarify that when I said 'document' the elephants interesting construction, I meant to take a photograph of it. And the noncontroversial nature of it being 'art' would apply to that photograph. I admit that then moving to the point that should we carefully gather up the actual stuff the elephant did, and carefully and exactly reproduce it in some gallery, would that be 'art' is a more open, but nonetheless interesting question.
Ed, I agree. It's the interesting question: "What is art?", which no one yet has answered adequately since the question calls for a subjective definition. As far as I'm concerned, in order for something to be art, whether it be music, poetry, painting, photography, pottery, glass, etc., it has to hit me with a transcendental jolt -- an experience I can't put into words. I'm afraid the elephant's painting doesn't quite fall into that category. I lived for a year and a half in Thailand and, happily, never saw an elephant in the act of painting. But my next door neighbor went to Thailand for a week last year and brought back an elephant painting. I've examined it carefully and I have to agree, it looks like a painting executed by an elephant. (Not that I have anything against elephants.) Since I have no other elephant paintings to compare it with I can't really say whether or not it's a good