Amazon founder Jeff Bezos as the Mona Lisa (edit by Hyperallergic)

A growing number of people online are urging the world’s wealthiest man, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, to buy Leonardo Da Vinci’s famous Mona Lisa painting … and eat it! 

Yes, that’s a real thing that is happening in the world. An online petition posted by Kane Powell and signed by over 4,500 people is titled “We want Jeff Bezos to buy and eat the Mona Lisa.”

“Nobody has eaten the mona lisa and we feel jeff bezos needs to take a stand and make this happen,” reads the single-sentence petition. 

The Mona Lisa, famously housed in the Louvre Museum in Paris, is owned by the French state. Despite its absurdity — or perhaps because of it — the comical petition continues to gain supporters and draw media attention.

Most amusing are the comments left on the petition’s page by supporters, starting with Angel Flores from Phoenix, Arizona who wrote, “Gobble da lisa.”

“This is the most important petition in modern times,” argued Abhishek Ranjit from Kathmandu, Nepal. “Jeff Bezos needs to eat the Mona Lisa to save the world.”

“If not now, when?” Arnau Alier asked with a sense of urgency. “If not he, Who?”

Joe Kanaan from Toronto, Canada, made the case that the painting is “available online anyway,” and therefore “We don’t really need the original anymore.”

The multibillionaire recently announced that he will be one of the first civilians to fly to space in a rocket launched by his company Blue Origin. The flight is scheduled for July 20. Many online have encouraged him to take permanent residence in space.  

It must be noted that it’s not recommended for anyone to eat an oil painting. A famous example of its inadvisable effects is Vincent Van Gogh, who is said to have tried to poison himself by eating paint and drinking turpentine.

Hakim Bishara is a Senior Editor at Hyperallergic. He is also a co-director at Soloway Gallery, an artist-run space in Brooklyn. Bishara is a recipient of the 2019 Andy Warhol Foundation and Creative Capital...