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Who is Deborah de Robertis, the artist who painted The Origin of the World?

Throwing a liquid at a famous canvas has been seen again and again.

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Who is Deborah de Robertis, the artist who painted The Origin of the World?

Throwing a liquid at a famous canvas has been seen again and again. Except that this time, the demands which motivated the “performance” aimed at The Origin of the World are not environmental. Deborah de Robertis' performance, entitled "We do not separate the woman from the artist", would be rather feminist. Indeed, on the five tagged paintings in the Lacan exhibition, when the artist meets psychoanalysis, the slogan “ME TOO” was written in red letters. On a video sent by Deborah de Robertis to AFP, we can see two women dressed in black energetically writing these two words, then chanting them at will in front of a handful of visitors. All the works were protected by glass, as assured by the Center Pompidou Metz.

The interdepartmental service of the Metz judicial police is already on the case. The two women, born in 1986 and 1993 and without criminal records, placed in police custody Monday afternoon, were indicted Tuesday evening, the public prosecutor in Metz Yves Badorc announced to AFP. A judicial investigation was opened for “degradation or deterioration of cultural property committed during a meeting” and “theft of cultural property during a meeting,” said the magistrate. Deborah de Robertis claimed responsibility for the action on Instagram the same evening: “I am the exclusive organizer of this performance and am waiting to be summoned by the police who know who my lawyer is. »

In fact, this is not her first attempt at Deborah de Robertis. In 2014, she reproduced The Origin of the World opposite Courbet's painting at the Musée d'Orsay in Paris. New scandal in 2016, when she lay naked in front of Olympia by Édouard Manet. Three years later, she showed her penis in front of the Mona Lisa at the Louvres. The same year, she paraded in Paris bare-chested, dressed in a red sweatshirt, to symbolize a modern Marianne, during a Yellow Vest demonstration. Finally, in Lourdes, in 2018, she appeared naked, simply dressed in a blue veil imitating that of a statue of the Virgin. This latest outburst exposed him to a fine of 2,000 euros.

The performer did not just paint a few canvases. His group also seized a piece by Annette Ménager, an embroidery on which we can read: “I think therefore I suck”. The piece of white fabric is part of his “My Proverbs Collection” series, dating from the 1970s.

“I consider this work to be mine,” she said in an Instagram post, adding that “photos and videos will follow.” » And a few hours later, the artist published on his account a video featuring the curator of the Lacan exhibition, Bernard Marcadé.

She presents it as a “teaser of the film that I made around fifteen years ago. » The art historian, professor of aesthetics and art history, art critic and curator of independent exhibitions plays the main role, slumped in a bed facing a Deborah de Robertis who would be “naked”. In voiceover, we can hear a comment from the artist: “These men who slipped their finger into my penis, they imagined being hidden from view, they imagined being behind closed doors. » At the end of the footage, the camera pans to the bedroom wall, where several works are framed, including the famous piece by Annette Ménager.

Seven months ago, the photo she took in 2014, sex in the air, at the Musée d'Orsay, called Mirror of Origin, was refused by Bernard Marcadé for the exhibition on the psychoanalyst. Considering that the curator was detrimental to her work, she put pressure on the Center Pompidou Metz until she was heard. Mirror of Origin was on display Monday evening. Deborah de Robertis even insisted on desecrating her own production, which was not spared by her team.

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