Gauguin Attacker: Painting Is 'Very Homosexual'

'Evil' painting unharmed after Susan Burns' gallery attack

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 5, 2011 2:20 AM CDT | Updated Apr 5, 2011 7:00 AM CDT
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(Newser) – The woman who attacked a Paul Gauguin painting in Washington's National Gallery believed the painting of two topless Tahitian women was both "evil" and "homosexual," according to a criminal complaint obtained by The Smoking Gun. "I feel that Gauguin is evil. He has nudity and is bad for the children. He has two women in the painting and it’s very homosexual," Susan Burns, 53, told police.

"I was trying to remove it. I think it should be burned," Burns said, according to the criminal complaint. "I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you." Burns, who has convictions for carjacking, disorderly conduct, trespassing, and assault on a law enforcement officer, was tackled by another gallery visitor after she began pounding the $80 million painting with her fists. The museum says the painting, which was protected by a plexiglass shield, is unharmed and will go back on display today, reports the Washington Post. Click for more on the attack.

A 2006 mugshot of Susan Burns.
A 2006 mugshot of Susan Burns.   (Police handout)
Paul Gauguin's 1899 painting Two Tahitian Women was unharmed by the unhinged woman's attack.
Paul Gauguin's 1899 painting "Two Tahitian Women" was unharmed by the unhinged woman's attack.   (Wikipedia)
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