Woman defaces famous Louvre painting with black pen

PARIS Fri Feb 8, 2013 5:21pm IST

A woman looks at Eugene Delacroix 's painting, ''Liberty Leading the People (28 July 1830) (La Liberté guidant le peuple) in ''La Galerie du Temps'' (Gallery of Time) during media day on the eve of the inauguration of the Le Louvre Lens Museum, in Lens, northern France, December 3, 2012. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol/Files

A woman looks at Eugene Delacroix 's painting, ''Liberty Leading the People (28 July 1830) (La Liberté guidant le peuple) in ''La Galerie du Temps'' (Gallery of Time) during media day on the eve of the inauguration of the Le Louvre Lens Museum, in Lens, northern France, December 3, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Pascal Rossignol/Files

PARIS (Reuters) - France's Louvre-Lens museum shut two galleries on Friday after a woman scribbled with a black marker pen on its star painting, Eugene Delacroix's "Liberty Leading the People".

Police were questioning a 28-year-old woman who was arrested on Thursday evening after writing "AE911" across a 30 cm section at the bottom of the work, a judicial source said.

"AE911Truth" is the name of a website called "Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth" whose backers say they are seeking to establish the truth of the September 11, 2001 suicide airliner attacks on New York's Twin Towers.

Delacroix's "Liberty Leading the People", painted in 1830, was chosen by the Louvre-Lens in northern France as its emblem for its official opening last December and is on loan from the main Louvre museum in Paris.

The work, depicting a bare-breasted woman brandishing a tricolour flag and leading her people over the bodies of the fallen, commemorates the 1830 French Revolution.

The museum said an initial examination suggested the damage was superficial and the famous work could be easily restored. (Reporting By Pierre Savary; Writing by Vicky Buffery; Editing by Brian Love and Paul Casciato)

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