Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Gumming Up the System

Apparently, some kid at the Detroit Institute of Art stuck a wad of gum (Wrigley's Extra Polar Ice) on Helen Frankenthaler's "The Bay," a work valued at $1.5 million.

Based on my extensive experience with middle school as an institution; possession, chewing or the sticking of gum anywhere is generally one of the most severe misbehavioral predicaments you can get yourself into, somewhere between standard ink-based graffiti and bomb threat. Which means this 12-year old kid must have known he was playing with FIRE. Of course, the museum staff has had the wool pulled over their eyes:

"Even though we give very strict guidelines on proper behavior and we hold students to high standards, he is only 12 and I don't think he understood the ramifications of what he did before it happened"
Gum on "The Bay" today perhaps, but where will that gum be next time? What if he gets a hold of some Bubble Yum or, God forbid, Bazooka Joe?

Then again, as I look at the painting (to your right), I can kind of see how "maybe" this was misinterepreted as a rogue tile in the wall just begging to have something stuck to it.