A man dressed as an elderly woman in a wheelchair smeared cake on the protective glass in front of the Mona Lisa in an attempt to deface the revered 16th-century work of art.
At the time of the incident on Sunday — which was reported on French news outlet franceinfo and widely shared on Twitter — the perpetrator was viewing the painting when he got up out of the wheelchair and besmirched the protective covering around it.
The Mona Lisa sits in France’s world-famous Louvre Museum in Paris and is heavily protected from the throngs who visit the cultural landmark each year. The portrait is housed in bullet-proof glass with security guards standing by at the ready.
Today one the most famous paintings in the world, it was created by Leonardo da Vinci in 1503 and has been hung at the Louvre on and off since 1800.
Museumgoers who wish to view the oil painting must line up behind a velvet rope, stepping forward one at a time to gaze at it or take a photo.
The “grandmother” perpetrator attempted to break the protective glass surrounding the painting, then proceeded to spread the dessert across the front, ending the display by tossing rose petals around himself.
He was then subdued by authorities and taken away, shouting: “Think about the Earth. There are people who are destroying the Earth. Think about it. All artists think about the Earth. That’s why I did it. Think about the planet.”
Copyright 2022 Anadolu Agency. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.