To Protest Budget Cuts, Museum Torches Art

It calls burnings 'political, necessary, and compelling'
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 18, 2012 10:11 AM CDT
To Protest Budget Cuts, Museum Torches Art
Casoria Contemporary Art Museum Director Antonio Manfredi stands next to a burning work by French artist Severine Bourguignon in this YouTube screenshot.   (YouTube)

An Italian art museum is so mad about the budget cuts coming its way that it has begun burning art works in protest. The Casoria Contemporary Art Museum's eccentric director, Antonio Manfredi, set fire to a painting by French Artist Severine Bourguignon yesterday, the BBC reports, and let it burn until it was completely destroyed. He's promising to do the same thing to three paintings a week until funding improves, in a protest he's dubbed "Art War."

"Our 1,000 artworks are headed for destruction anyway because of the government's indifference," Manfredi said. Bourguignon supports the protest, as do several other artists across Europe. One Welsh sculptor even flambéed one of his own works in solidarity, and says it didn't pain him much to do so. "The process of making art, and the interaction with people, is more important than keeping it as a precious object," he said. (Read more Casoria Contemporary Art Museum stories.)

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