Sculpture by Lee Ufan Vandalized

  • By Kwon Kyoung-hoon

    March 27, 2018 12:36

    A sculpture made by the world-renowned Korean artist Lee Ufan has been vandalized in Busan.

    The Busan Museum of Art said on Monday that it discovered a sculpture by the artist that is displayed outdoors marred by graffiti and footprints and reported the discovery to police.

    The massive sculpture is made of iron and stone and stands 2.7 m tall and 3 m wide, one of four bought by the museum when it opened an annex in Lee's honor in 2015. It cost W700 million back then and is effectively priceless (US$1=W1,079).

    A sculpture by Lee Ufan is scarred by graffiti at the Busan Museum of Art in the southern port city. /Courtesy of the Busan Museum of Art

    The damage was discovered in late January. Someone had carved the name of boy band Wanna One member Kang Daniel onto the sculpture with a sharp object. A footprint has also been found under the scribbling.

    Born in Haman, South Gyeongsang Province, Lee (85) is the most famous Korean modern artist after video artist Paik Nam-june. He went to school in the southern port city and was personally involved in designing the annex.

    Police said they are scrutinizing surveillance camera footage, but the low resolution of the footage is hindering the investigation.

    Busan Museum of Art director Kim Sun-hee said, "This is the result of the ignorance of some individuals." But critics are accusing the museum of failing to protect its assets.

    The museum deploys no security personnel to guard the public art and has only put up a warning sign saying surveillance cameras are monitoring the premises.

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