A painting reportedly worth $1 million was ruined after a goon drew graffiti on it with a ballpoint pen. The vandal was a Russian security guard hired to protect the painting.
The 60-year-old guard, who worked for a private security company, had come in for his first day at his new job when boredom drove him to draw a pair of eyes on a million-dollar painting with a ballpoint pen.
The painting, known as “Three Figures,” by artist Anna Leporskaya, depicts three faceless people. A photo of the painting after the vandalism shows small black circles drawn where eyes would go.
The security guard was immediately fired.
The Art Newspaper Russia reported that the painting must be restored since the guard’s pen penetrated the paint. That will cost $3,350 and be covered by insurance.
The motive behind what The Art Newspaper dubbed “a worthy contender for the most disastrous first day on the job” was unclear.
But, said Anna Reshetkina, curator of the exhibit that included “Three Figures,” noted, “the administration believes it was some kind of a lapse in sanity.”
Russian police were first willing to let the incident go because they considered the damage “insignificant”, but that changed after a backlash by the public.
The 60-year-old guard now faces a $530 fine, 360 hours of “compulsory work.” or “corrective labor for up to one year or arrest for up to three months.”