Passionate kiss lands art lover in court

A self-professed art lover stood trial this week accused of damaging a $2-million painting by kissing it while wearing red lipstick.

The deputy prosecutor in the southern French city of Avignon accused the defendant on Tuesday, Sam Rindy, of “savagery” for having left a lipstick smear on the work by United States artist Cy Twombly, and demanded the court fine her â,¬4 500 ($6 320).

The picture’s owner, Yvon Lambert, wants $2-million in damages and a further â,¬33 400 that he says is needed to pay for the restoration work.

Rindy, an artist of Cambodian origin, has said she was “overcome with passion” when she saw the painting hanging on a gallery wall in July 2007. “This woman is profoundly upset. She was overcome by an emotion that she could not tame,” her lawyers, Patrick Gontard Jean-Michel Ambrosino, told the court, describing the kiss as an “act of love”.

Lambert’s lawyer rejected this line of defense, saying: “In love, there need to be two consenting people”.

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