July 23, 2024


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“Mona Lisa”: Protesters throw soup at the painting at the Louvre Museum in Paris

“Mona Lisa”: Protesters throw soup at the painting at the Louvre Museum in Paris


Protesters threw soup at the Mona Lisa painting in Paris on Sunday, but it was protected from damage by its glass cover.

The environmental group Riposte Alimentaire – which roughly translates to “food response” – said two protesters involved in its campaign were behind the vandalism.

a video The incident shows protesters throwing orange soup from bottles before hiding under a protective barrier to address onlookers. “What is more important: art or the right to a healthy and sustainable diet?” He heard someone ask.

Louvre staff were then seen moving black screens between visitors and demonstrators.

The museum vacated the “Hall of States” room, which contains the “Mona Lisa” painting, although it has since reopened.

A statement issued by the museum said: “Two activists from the environmental movement Riposte Alimentaire sprayed pumpkin soup on the armored glass protecting the Mona Lisa, on Sunday, January 28, 2024, around 10 a.m. (4 a.m. Eastern time).” “Security staff at the Louvre Museum intervened immediately.”

The museum said it was filing a complaint.

In a series of social media posts about the incident, Riposte Alimentaire said she wanted to draw attention to unsustainable food production and hunger in France, calling for “the integration of food into the general social security system.”

According to its website, Riposte Alimentaire is part of the A22 network, a group of activist groups — including Just Stop Oil, which organized a similar attack on Vincent van Gogh's “Sunflowers” painting in London in 2022 — known for disruptive climate protests.

The incident comes amid widespread demonstrations by French farmers over wages, competition and government regulations.

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On X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, French Culture Minister Rachida Dati condemned the Louvre protests. “The Mona Lisa, like our heritage, belongs to future generations,” she added. books. “No issue can justify targeting her!”

“I offer all my support to the Louvre staff,” added Dati, who was appointed culture minister by new French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal earlier this month.

Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece “Mona Lisa” hangs in the Louvre and is arguably the most famous painting in the world. Millions of visitors line up each year to view, photograph or take photos of the tiny artwork, which measures just over 2.5 feet tall and less than 2 feet wide.

Painted in the early 16th century, this mysterious portrait is no stranger to vandalism and theft.

It was stolen by a Louvre employee in 1911, raising its international profile, and the lower part of the painting was attacked by acid in the 1950s, prompting the museum to beef up the protective measures surrounding the work, including bulletproof glass.

In 2009, a woman angrily threw a ceramic cup at the plate, breaking the cup and leaving the plate unharmed.

Then in 2022, a visitor applied a layer of frost to the protective glass of the Renaissance painting.

CNN's Jackie Palumbo contributed to this report.