Performance Artist Defaces Artworks in French Gallery with “Me Too” Slogan

Performance Artist Defaces Artworks in French Gallery with “Me Too” Slogan

A performance artist, Deborah de Robertis, and an unidentified woman caused a stir at the Centre Pompidou-Metz in France on Monday when they defaced several artworks with the slogan “Me Too.” The incident, captured in shocking video footage shared by de Robertis, involved the duo running through the gallery and tagging at least five artworks, including Gustave Courbet’s renowned 19th-century painting, “The Origin of the World.” The painting, which depicts the lower half of a nude woman with her vulva exposed, was not permanently damaged as it was protected by a glass pane, according to a statement from the museum.

In addition to Courbet’s painting, the pair also scrawled over a work by Louise Bourgeouis and de Robertis’ own photograph titled “Mirror of Origin.” However, these artworks were also safeguarded by glass panes and remained unharmed. The museum reported that an embroidery by Annette Messager was taken during the stunt, which de Robertis later admitted to possessing and claimed as her own.

The protest, according to de Robertis, aimed to draw attention to the “misogynistic divide” in the art world. However, the performance was met with strong criticism from officials, including museum director Chiara Parisi, who expressed shock at de Robertis’ actions. French Minister of Culture Rachida Dati condemned the act, stating that an artwork should not be treated as a mere canvas for current messages. Metz mayor François Grosdidier labeled the targeting of the Courbet painting as a “criminal act against a major work of our heritage” committed by “feminist fanatics.”

Deborah de Robertis has a history of appropriating famous artworks in her performances. In 2014, she first targeted Courbet’s “The Origin of the World” by mimicking the subject’s pose while exposing herself. Two years later, she caused controversy by lying in front of Edouard Manet’s “Olympia” with a camera around her neck. In 2020, de Robertis was fined over $2,000 for appearing naked in front of a cave in the French pilgrimage town of Lourdes.

The incident took place at the Centre Pompidou-Metz, a branch of the Centre Pompidou in Paris, which is currently hosting an exhibition on psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan. “The Origin of the World” is on loan from the Musée d’Orsay in Paris for this exhibition.

CrimeDoor
Author: CrimeDoor

3 Responses

  1. The incident at the Centre Pompidou-Metz can be compared to a disruptive protest at a prestigious dinner party. Imagine a group of people crashing the event, causing chaos by spray-painting slogans on the walls and interrupting conversations. While their actions may grab attention and spark a discussion, they ultimately disrupt the atmosphere and potentially damage the reputation of the event. Similarly, the performance artist and the unidentified woman disrupted the gallery, defacing artworks with the slogan “Me Too,” which may have sparked conversation

  2. As a blog commenter, I would like to share a similar incident that occurred at a local art exhibition in my city. The exhibition featured a collection of contemporary artworks that explored themes of sexuality and gender identity. One particular artwork, a provocative sculpture depicting a transgender figure, sparked controversy and debate among visitors.

    During the exhibition, a group of activists entered the gallery and staged a protest against the artwork. They argued that the sculpture was offensive and perpetuated harmful stereotypes about transgender individuals. In an act of defiance

  3. This incident at the Centre Pompidou-Metz raises important questions about the boundaries of art and activism. If you’re interested in exploring the intersection of art and social movements further, I recommend checking out the book “Art and Activism: Projects of John and Yoko” by Jonathan Harris. This book delves into the ways in which artists have used their work to challenge societal norms and advocate for change. It offers a thought-provoking perspective on the power of art as a tool for activism

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