Man in wig throws cake at glass to protect the Mona Lisa at the Louvre Museum in Paris, France

PARIS – A man dressed in what appeared to be an old woman in a wheelchair threw a piece of cake at the glass protecting the Mona Lisa at the Louvre Museum and shouted at people to think of planet Earth.

As the Paris prosecutor announced on Monday, the 36-year-old man was arrested after the incident on Sunday and admitted to a police psychiatric ward. An investigation has been launched into the damage to cultural assets.

Videos posted on social media showed a young man in a wig and lipstick arriving in a wheelchair. The man, whose identity was unknown, was also seen throwing roses at limp guests in the museum gallery.

The cake attack left a conspicuous white creamy smear on the glass, but Leonardo da Vinci’s famous work was not damaged.

Security guards were filmed escorting the wig-wearing man away as he yelled at the surprised visitors in the gallery, “Think of Earth! There are people destroying the earth! Think about it. Artists tell you: Think of the earth. That’s why I did it.”

The guards were then filmed cleaning the cake out of the jar. A statement from the Louvre confirmed the attack on the artwork, which was about a “patisserie”.

The Renaissance masterpiece from the 16th century has seen a lot in the more than 500 years of its existence.

The painting was stolen by a museum employee in 1911, an event that increased the painting’s international fame. It was also damaged in an acid attack by a vandal in the 1950s and has been kept behind glass ever since.

In 2009, a Russian woman, angry at not being able to get French citizenship, threw a ceramic mug at it, smashing the mug but damaging neither the glass nor the painting.

Copyright © 2022 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. Man in wig throws cake at glass to protect the Mona Lisa at the Louvre Museum in Paris, France

Dais Johnston

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