The Mona Lisa was left shaken but unharmed on Sunday when a visitor to the Louvre tried to smash the glass protecting the world’s most famous painting before smearing cream across its surface in an apparent climate-related publicity stunt.
The perpetrator was a man disguised as an old lady who jumped out of a wheelchair before attacking the glass.“Maybe this is just nuts to me…,” posted the author of a video of the incident’s aftermath that shows a Louvre staffer cleaning the glass.“(He) then proceeds to smear cake on the glass, and throws roses everywhere before being tackled by security.”
Another video posted on social media showed the same staffer finishing cleaning the pane while another attendant removes a wheelchair from the front of the Da Vinci masterpiece.
“Think of the earth, people are destroying the earth”, the man, dressed in a wig, said in French in another video posting that showed him being led away from the Paris gallery with the wheelchair, indicating that the incident likely had an environmentalist motive.
A Louvre statement confirmed the attack on the artwork involving a “patisserie”.
The painting has seen a lot in its over-500 years in existence.It was stolen in 1911 by a museum employee, an event which increased the painting’s international fame.It was also damaged in an acid attack perpetrated by a vandal in the 1950s, and has since been kept behind glass.