Vandal defaces Houston Picasso painting

Video of vandalism goes viral

HOUSTON - A vandal was captured on a cellphone video spray-painting a Picasso painting in a Houston museum.

The video hit the Internet on Wednesday.  It shows a man walking up to the original 1929 Picasso dubbed "Conquista La Bestia," or "Conquer the Beast" inside the Menil Collection in Montrose.  He is then seen spray-painting the word "conquista," which is Spanish for  "couquer" on the painting before taking off.

The man who took the video did not want to be identified.  He said he confronted the man after he witnessed him spray-paint it and asked him why he did it.  According to the witnesses, the vandal said he was an up-and-coming artist and he did it to honor Picasso's work. 

"I just thought it was pretty cool how he just went up to the painting without fear, spray painted it and just walked off," the witness told Local 2.

Other museums patrons like Bryant Bell weren't too amused at the vandal's addition to the priceless artwork. 

"I just think that if you desecrate art, then you should be prosecuted," a patron said.

The painting has since been removed from the wall.  

So far, no criminal charges have been filed in the case. 

The Menil Collection has not commented on the story.


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