Kill Lies All, 1996, by Felix Gmelin |
After Pablo Picasso (1937) and Tony Shafrazi (1974) Oil on canvas, 195 x 295 cm
'For me, an image is the sum of destructions'
An enraged man sprayed the words 'Kill Lies All' on Picasso's painting Guernica in the Museum of Modern Art yesterday. He was seized immediately and the red-paint lettering was removed from the masterpiece, leaving no damage. The vandal, who shouted that he was an artist, was identified as Tony Shafrazi. As stunned visitors looked on helplessly in the third-ßoor gallery where the huge antiwar painting hangs, the man drew a an of spray paint from his pocket and scrawled the three words in foot-high letters across the gray, black and white masterwork.
Source: The New York Times, March 1, 1974
Tony Shafrazi is now a well-known art dealer in New York. In December 1980, he said in an interview in Art in America: 'I wanted to bring the art absolutely up to date, to retrieve it from art history and give it life. Maybe that's why the Guernica action remains so difficult to deal with. I tried to trespass beyond that invisible barrier that no one is allowed to cross; I wanted to dwell within the act of the painting's creation, get involved with the making of the work, put my hand within it and by that act encourage the individual viewer to challenge it, deal with it and thus see it in its dynamic raw state as it was being made, not as a piece of history.'