A hungry student reportedly chowed down on a banana at the Leeum Museum of Art in Seoul.
The only problem?
The fruit was part of an art installation called “Comedian” by Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan.
The Seoul National University student ate part of the artwork, a ripe banana taped to a wall, around 1 p.m., Thursday, according to the Korea Herald. Once he was done, he tidied up a bit and duct-taped the remaining banana peel to the wall.
When the museum asked why he ate the banana, the art major said he hadn’t eaten breakfast and was hungry.
The student later told a reporter he thought damaging the work of art could be seen as artwork in itself, the Korea Herald reported. The banana is replaced every two to three days and the museum will not charge the student with any damages.
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Banana had been eaten before
The piece is part of Cattelan’s exhibition “WE,” according to the Korea Herald.
Cattelan is known as a prankster, troublemaker, or troll in the art realm. Some of his work includes a toilet made of solid gold and a larger-than-life sculpture of a hand with its middle finger in the air.
The piece making headlines this week is no stranger to the limelight either. Cattelan has created multiple versions of the piece that have sold for over $100,000.
One sold in 2019 for $120,000 before being eaten by another artist. The man, David Datuna, said he was doing performance art, loved Cattelan’s work and called it “delicious.”
The Miami couple who bought one of the pieces said in 2019 that they believed it would become an icon. They planned to give the artwork to a museum.
Calling it the “unicorn of the art world,” the couple said the piece will become part of history.
“We are acutely aware of the blatant absurdity of the fact that “Comedian” is an otherwise inexpensive and perishable piece of produce and a couple inches of duct tape,” said Billy and Beatrice Cox in a 2019 statement. “Ultimately we sense that Cattelan’s banana will become an iconic historical object.”