Right Wing Artist Performs Dadaist Act
See this origininal article from the Telegraph UK here.
Officials see red over Trevi Fountain stunt
By Malcolm Moore, in Rome Last Updated: 2:38am BST 24/10/2007
A man who turned the water in Rome’s Trevi Fountain red after tipping a bucket of dye into the world famous landmark is believed to be an “artist” from the Italian Futurist art movement.
Italian police said Graziano Cecchini, a 54-year-old extreme right-wing activist, was responsible for dyeing the fountain red. The police identified him from a clear image taken by a security camera. The Trevi Fountain dyed red However, Mr Cecchini denied any involvement. “It is true that I do look a lot like the man who coloured the fountain,” he said. “But it is not me. And besides, I prefer the Tortoise fountain to the Trevi. “The police came to arrest me on Saturday night, but I said ‘so what?’.” Mr Cecchini, who has not been arrested, today gave a hastily-assembled press conference to protest his innocence. He added that he was not a Futurist artist, but a Surrealist. Earlier, police said the perpetrator had left behind several leaflets urging the public to embrace the water’s new colour after staging the Friday afternoon stunt. The fountain remained a blood-red hue for several hours before technicians briefly shut off the water and restored a clear flow. advertisementExperts said the baroque fountain was not permanently damaged and the marble statues depicting the sea deity Neptune on his chariot had not absorbed the colour. “There shouldn’t be any relevant damage,” said Eugenio La Rocca, superintendent for Rome’s monuments. Anita Ekberg, the actress who frolicked in the waters of the 18th century monument in the film La Dolce Vita, said the incident was “a deplorable act of vandalism and an offence against Rome”. The landmark, designed by architect Nicola Salvi, has been a tourist hotspot since Federico Fellini’s 1960 movie La Dolce Vita. Many visitors flip a coin into the fountain, as tradition says that doing so promises a prompt return to the Eternal City. The news agency ANSA reported that a box was found near the fountain containing leaflets by a group that claimed responsibility for the act. The leaflets said the red paint was a protest for expenses incurred in organizing the Rome Film Festival and symbolically referred to the event’s red carpet, ANSA reported. Rome’s monuments are monitored with security cameras and police, but the risk of random, isolated vandalism remains, said Silvio Di Francia, city councilman for culture. “We are obviously in a city full of tourists so the gesture of an agitator is always a potential problem,” he said.
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