Die Louvre Museum in Paris is being accused of damaging a massive work of art by contemporary American artist Cy Twombly.
The Cy Twombly Foundation alleges the museum’s recent renovation has permanently altered Twombly’s 3,750-square-foot painting, “The Ceiling,” which hangs above the museum’s Salle des Bronzes gallery where works of Greek and Roman art are housed on the first floor, ARTNews reported.
A legal representative for the Cy Twombly Foundation reportedly sent a letter to the Louvre earlier this month alleging that the renovation has changed the way “The Ceiling” painting is shown, and is a “violation of the artist’s moral rights,” according to ARTNews.
The painting, unrelieved in 2010 by the Virginia-born artist who died a year later, features Hellenic sculptors with a blue background meant to evoke the Aegean Sea, egter, the walls in which it’s surrounded by were repainted from white to red during the renovation.
“The deep red that has been introduced violates these harmonies and entirely destroys the balance of Twombly’s sensitive and memorable installation,” Nicola Del Roscio, president of Cy Twombly Foundation, said in a statement to ARTnews.
The artist’s foundation is requesting the museum repaint the walls to their original state before reopening the gallery to the public.
A Louvre representative told ArtNews the painting has been “fully preserved” en “nothing in the agreement says that room will remain frozen in its museography.”
The museum has been closed since October due to the pandemic.