A couple vandalizes a $440,000 painting after mistaking it to be interactive

A young couple in South Korea took “interpretive art” a little too literally when it mistakenly destroyed a canvas painting by American graffiti artist JonOne.

The abstract piece was part of a mall exhibition in Seoul. A number of brushes and paint jars were scattered in front of the canvas as part of the display, leading the couple to believe they were free to add to the artwork. The gallery staff noticed new dark green brushstrokes on the painting and alerted security to check the surveillance footage.

Upon inspection, they found the suspects and the couple was immediately arrested by police for investigation.

The exhibition’s co-organizer, Kang Wook, released the couple without charge when they told the agency that their actions were not malicious.

Measuring 22.9 feet by 7.8 feet, the piece is said to be worth $ 440,000.

“We are currently discussing with the artist whether it should be restored. But as the responsible agency, we will do our best to minimize the damage to the couple who accidentally destroyed the work, ”said Kang Wook.

Since the incident, the gallery has put a barrier and a “Do Not Touch” sign in front of it to prevent the painting from being destroyed again.

A JonOne representative said the artist “has no plans to act on the incident”.

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