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Label: glass

Wednesday 22nd June 2016A Child's Cautionary Tale

May truly was a rough month for museums around the world. From the SFMOMA glasses prank pulled off by a teenager to the fake heists orchestrated in the National Portrait Gallery and the Tate Britain by members of Youtube prankster group Trollstation, it seems like things couldn't possibly get any worse. But if the modern world has taught us anything, it's that there's always some new horror in store just around the corner.

At least in the first two incidents, nothing was actually damaged in the museum with the possibility of a little bit of pride. This next story is something more of a disaster, and takes place in the Shanghai Museum of Glass (cringing already, are we?).

The tale involves two spoiled and undisciplined children who are let loose in the museum, and their absolutely useless parents. The kids completely disregard any of the proper rules of etiquette, and more than just crossing the velvet ropes, they actually go on to seriously damage a piece by artist Shelly Xue entitled Angel is Waiting. Xue is one of the pioneers of the studio glass movement in China, and spent 27 months making the piece which she dedicated to her newborn daughter.

The children began messing with the piece, and their parents, standing nearby, did absolutely nothing to prevent them. Unbelievably, they actually took out their phones to begin filming the outrage! It wasn't until the spoiled brats started actually slamming the sculpture against the wall that they began to call the children off, but not before the piece was completely fractured.

Rather than choose to repair the piece, Xue chose to leave it as-is as a testament to the whole event, and retitled it 'Broken', which is a rather classy way to handle something that must have been incredibly frustrating to her.

The museum didn't mention any sort of punishment that was meted out as a result of the incident, but they did install a screen beside the work displaying the closed circuit security footage of the incident. Hopefully, it will act as a cautionary tale to other parents of spoiled brats, but it seems to send a bit of a mixed message considering that there was no official punishment noted.

A word of caution for parents: make sure you keep your children under control around precious works of art. There is absolutely no excuse for this sort of behaviour. 

Posted on June 22nd 2016 on 03:55pm
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