A man posing as an elderly woman in a wheelchair successfully disrupted the peace and tranquility that usually prevails at The Louvre Museum, smashing cake on the Mona Lisa, the famous painting of Leonardo da Vinci.
The magnificent painting, which had not been damaged in any way, still looked beautiful even after being smeared with white cream all over its protective glass surface. The culprit wore a wig and lipstick as he encouraged people to “think of the Earth” while being held from the scene.
Louvre guests were left speechless when they witnessed the extraordinary event that unfolded before them. One of the witnesses is Luke Sundberg, from the US.
“The crowd began gasping, and we looked up, and some man in a wheelchair [dressed] as an old lady ran up to the painting and started punching it before smearing cake all over it,” said the 20-year-old visitor in an interview with PA news network.
“It took about 10 to 15 seconds for the security to actually take the man away, but the crowd seemed [to] panic a little bit,” he added. “It was jaw-dropping, it was a lot to take in considering how historic Mona Lisa is… the moment was once in a million.”
The man, who was seen throwing roses in the gallery, was escorted out by security.
“Think of the Earth,” he said. “There are people who are destroying the Earth. Think about it. Artists tell you: think of the Earth. That’s why I did this.”
The Paris prosecutor’s office has begun an investigation into the damages inflicted on cultural artifacts this past weekend. One activist was detained and sent to a psychiatric unit while awaiting investigation results about what happened.
Thankfully, the Renaissance painting was installed in glass to protect it following an acid attack in the 1950s.
A footage from Sundberg revealed onlookers clapping after the cream was entirely removed from the glass.
“What were the odds this would happen?” asked another museum guest, 26-year-old Klevis, from Albania.