Seagram Mural Defaced in London

Seagram Mural “Black on Maroon” defaced in London.

What a shocking and sad event today in London. What are people thinking? It’s the same as the defacing of the Pietà, or any other work of art. Was there something specific about Rothko’s work that makes it a target? I’m not sure, but it is difficult to see that this particular piece, one of the series that inspired so many (not the least of which was John Logan and RED) and was arguably the high point of this artist’s work, should be the target of senseless vandalism. Designed to elicit a contemplation of a deep inner tension, it provokes a senseless act of violence. The news report mentioned that the eye witness saw the vandal sit for some time contemplating the piece, awaiting a quiet moment to open his pen and scar the canvas. Was he thinking about the painting, the artist, or what it meant to him? Did it stir him, agitate him? Was it some perverted urge to place himself alongside the artist in some grasp for fame? Fifteen seconds of fame? Like the first question in John’s play, what did he see? Was it a protest against the high dollars the recent worked garnered at auction? In the end, I suppose asking why is a red-herring really. It doesn’t matter, nor will it change the fact that this remarkable work has been defaced. I hope he is brought to justice soon.

Here’s the link to the news story:
Seagram Mural Defaced

And the follow up:

I Didn’t Destroy the Picture

About EG

Edward Gero, an American actor, most noted for his stage work, is a four-time Helen Hayes Award recipient and sixteen-time Helen Hayes Nominee. He just completed a run at Arena Stage as Ben Hubbard in "The Little Foxes." He has appeared as Mark Rothko in "RED" at Goodman Theater in Chicago and Arena Stage, and as Gloucester in "King Lear" with Stacy Keach at Goodman and the Shakespeare Theatre, both directed by Robert Falls. Other regional credits include Nixon in "Nixon's Nixon," Salieri in "Amadeus" at Roundhouse Theater, Sweeney in "Sweeney Todd" at Signature Theatre, Donny in "American Buffalo" at Studio Theatre, and for the last six years, Scrooge in "A Christmas Carol" at Washington's historic Ford's Theatre. In 31 seasons In Washington, he has played 75 Shakespearean roles at STC including Hotspur in "Henry IV" (Helen Hayes Award), Bolingbroke in "Richard II" (Helen Hayes Award) and Macduff in "Macbeth"(Helen Hayes Award). Film and television credits include House of Cards, Turn: Washington's Spies, Die Hard II, Striking Distance, and narrations for The Discovery Channel and PBS. He is an Associate Professor of Theater and Head of the Performance Area for the School of Theater at George Mason University, and instructor for the Academy for Classical Acting at George Washington University Mr. Gero was featured on the cover of The Washington Post Magazine and profiled in the January 2011 American Theater Magazine.
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