Stencil Artist Defaces Picasso Painting in Houston Museum

Bullet Shih Jun, 2012 1
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Courtesy of Art Info, we have been alerted about another act of art vandalism directed at a Picasso painting at the de Menil Collection in Houston, Texas. The brazen act did not appear to be a random act of degrdation such as the drunken woman who urinated on a Clyfford Still painting early in 2012, but rather an attention seeking act by an aspiring artist as the YouTube post states,

Young Mexican-American artist URIEL LANDEROS, paints a stencil of a bullfighter killing a bull over an original 1929 Picasso painting in Houston TX.

**In Dedication to the art beast Pablo Picasso**

The work painted in 1929 was acquired by the de Menils in 1956 and has been on display at the museum since 1987.  The stencil spray painted with gold paint displayed a bullfighter and the word “conquista” in reference to Picasso’s obsession with bullfighting and the young artist’s dominance over the old master.

As Art info points out, this attack on a Picasso was not unprecedented and also shows that such an act may not be a career ender, and may in fact boost the career of young Landeros as was the case with a young Tony Shafrazi, a New York “artist” who attacked Picasso’s seminal work La Guernica at  MOMA in 1974 with a can of red spray paint with the words “LIES ALL KILL”.  As was the case with Shafrazi’s handiwork, it is hoped the de Menil Picasso was rushed to restorers and it is hoped that the painting will be cleaned by restorers without any lingering effects of damage.  Although Shafrazi put his art career on hold for close to 30 years to become one of the most powerful dealers in New York, he recently resurfaced in Art Basel 2012 with a booth consisting entirely of his own work this year.  His colored wall mounted tablets looking like closed laptops with stenciled letters and affixed images were selling for $150,000 apiece.

Tony Shafrazi after arrest in 1974 for spray painting Picasso at MOMA

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