Crimes of the Art

by Benjamin Sutton on May 19, 2015

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On this week’s art crime blotter: vandals attack Lego superhero statue, New York cops blast police brutality artwork, Cuban paintings stolen in Miami heist.

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Post image for Selfie Snappers Smash Baroque Sculpture in Herculean Feat of Stupidity

On Friday two tourists visiting the northern Italian city of Cremona broke part of an 18th-century sculpture they were climbing to take a selfie.

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Post image for Artist in Trouble for Tagging Joshua Tree National Park

A tag painted by the Swedish-Portuguese street artist and nightclub owner André Saraiva on a rock in Joshua Tree National Park has sparked an investigation after he posted a photo of it on Instagram on February 25.

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Post image for Smashed Conceptual Art Water Fountain Will Flow Again

Michael Asher’s understated drinking fountain sculpture on the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) campus was recently destroyed by a masked vandal, but officials at the school plan to rebuild it.

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In Brief

Vandal Destroys Conceptual Art Water Fountain

by Vic Vaiana on February 18, 2015

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The University of California, San Diego (UCSD) recently lost one of its campus’s most subtle and unusual piece of public art.

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Post image for How to Fix a Monet After Somebody Punches It

Conservators are probably the closest thing the art world has to surgeons.

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Post image for How to Punch a Monet and Get Away with It

Punching a painting by Claude Monet is never a good idea, as Andrew Shannon learned the hard way last week when he was sentenced to five years in prison for putting his fist through “Argenteuil Basin with a Single Sailboat” (1874) at the National Gallery of Ireland. But if it’s a digital likeness of the $10 million Impressionist painting, like the one that awaits in “Punch a Monet,” all bets — and gloves — are off.

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Post image for When in Rome, Refrain from Carving Your Initials into Ancient Buildings

A 42-year-old Russian tourist visiting Rome was arrested and fined €20,000 (~$25,000) for carving a “K” nearly 10 inches tall into a wall inside the Colosseum, the first century CE amphitheater.

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Vandalism by Casey Nocket at Crater Lake

A hiker who has been painting portraits on cliffs, rocks, and slopes at national parks in the western United States and posting images of the acrylic compositions on social media is now the subject of a National Park Service (NPS) investigation.

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Another Vandal Hits Jeff Koons Retrospective

Last night, a graffiti writer identified by the New York Times as Christopher Johnson, 33, of Manhattan, vandalized a fourth floor wall of the Jeff Koons retrospective at the Whitney Museum of Art.

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