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28th Jan 2024

Environmental protesters throw soup at the Mona Lisa painting in Paris

Simon Kelly

Mona Lisa soup

Taking ‘Soup season’ to a whole new level.

Visitors looked on in shock as environmental protesters threw the contents of a can of soup at the iconic Mona Lisa painting in the Louvre.

In a video shared by French news agency CL Press, a woman can be seen throwing liquid from a tin on to the 16th century painting.

The artwork by Leonardo Da Vinci, arguably the world’s most famous painting, is protected behind a bulletproof glass pane and was not damaged.

Protesters throw soup at the Mona Lisa painting

Footage shows the soup-throwing in action, where gallery visitors can be heard gasping and children heard crying, seemingly in shock at the incident.

After the stunt was performed, one of the activists removed her jacket to reveal a T-shirt bearing the slogan of the environmental activist group Riposte Alimentaire (Food Response).

The protesters said: “What is more important? Art or the right to healthy and sustainable food?

“Your agricultural system is sick. Our farmers are dying at work.”

Riposte Alimentaire is part of the A22 umbrella movement of protest groups, which also includes Just Stop Oil and Extinction Rebellion.

Gallery staff and security attempted to quickly cover up the scene with a black cloth, but failed to block it entirely. The gallery was then evacuated by security.

This is the second time the painting has been attacked with food-stuff, with the previous protester – a man dressed up as an old woman – opting for a custard pie in 2022.

A series of similar high-profile protests occurred last year, many at major sporting events like Wimbledon and the World Snooker Championship.

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