A T$50 million ($1.54 million) masterpiece by a 17th century Italian artist was back on display in the Taiwan capital on Tuesday after a 12-year-old boy tripped, fell and punched a hole in the canvas, the exhibit organizer said.
“Flowers” by Italian master Paolo Porpora is part of a Taipei exhibit showcasing artwork painted by or influenced by Leonardo da Vinci, according to main organizer David Sun.
The boy’s fall appeared to have been influenced by the Marx Brothers.
“It was such an unusual accident,” Sun said. “The boy was listening to the guide and wasn’t looking where he was going, and tripped and smashed a hole in the artwork.”
Sun said the boy and his family had expressed sincere regret and won’t face any punishment.
“We had an Italian appraiser on hand and immediately contacted the collector,” Sun said. “We decided to repair the painting immediately on site and it’s back on display already.”
(Story refiles to correct spelling in first paragraph, adds dropped word in paragraph 5)
(Reporting by Michael Gold; Editing by Nick Macfie)