Zuma painting ‘could be cleaned’

2012-05-24 06:54

If the paints used to deface the Brett Murray portrait of President Jacob Zuma were oil-based, the painting could be cleaned, an art expert has said.

Ruarc Peffers told SAfm Market Update with Moneyweb: “The red and black paint look oil-based ... If this is the case, then it wouldn’t be too much trouble to remove.

“Theoretically, it can be cleaned.”

Peffers said the defacing would not enhance its value.

“I don’t believe the value will change ... In a week or two this will be a distant memory,” Peffers said.

He said the painting had become a celebrity in its own right and was politically interesting, but in five years’ time it would be “passé”.

Barend la Grange and Louis Mabokela allegedly defaced the portrait with red and black paint at the Goodman Gallery in Johannesburg on Tuesday morning.

They were charged with causing malicious damage to property and were released on bail of R1 000 each.

Mabokela told City Press the paint he had used to deface the painting in which the president is depicted with his genitals exposed, had cost him R180.

Zuma, the ANC and his children have taken the Goodman Gallery, City Press and Brett Murray to court in an attempt to have the painting removed and to prevent its further distribution.

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