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Edouard Manet's "Olympia."

“Indecent exposure”

Artist arrested for lying naked next to nude portrait in Paris museum

By WITW Staff on January 19, 2016

Performance artist Deborah de Robertis has been arrested for indecent exposure for lying down naked next to Edouard Manet’s famous nude painting of the prostitute Olympia in the Musée d’Orsay in Paris. According to the artist’s lawyer, Tewfik Bouzenoune, it was an artistic performance, and de Robertis was wearing a camera to film the audience’s reactions. The Musee d’Orsay is not too happy with that explanation, though, and pressed charges for indecent exposure. “There were many people in front of the painting. Security guards responded well, they closed the room and asked her to get dressed,” a spokeswoman for the museum said.  “As she refused, the police were called and removed her.” Bouzenoune criticized the “worrying judicial prudishness”, saying that putting an artist in custody sends a “very bad message.” It wasn’t the first time de Robertis stirred up controversy with public nudity: in 2014, she exposed her vagina at the same museum in front of Gustave Courbet’s “Origin of the World”, a real-life reproduction of the painting’s close-up depiction of a woman’s genitals.

Read the full story at The Guardian.


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