To clean or not to clean? That’s Anish Kapoor’s dilemma

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PARIS - A controversial sculpture by British artist Anish Kapoor officially titled ‘Dirty Corner’ has been vandalised for a third time.
The work, on display in the gardens of France's Palace of Versailles, was found with graffiti saying "respect art" scrawled on it. The artist himself had previously described the work as ‘very sexual’ and the sculpture had become known with the unofficial name of ‘Queen’s Vagina’.
The work was first vandalised soon after its installation back in June 2015, when it was sprayed with yellow paint; it was subsequently inscribed with anti-Semitic graffiti before this latest episode in September.
At first the artist decided that the work should not be cleaned as he wanted the graffiti to bear witness to hatred and France's culture ministry agreed with his choice.
Prompted by local government opposition to leaving the offensive graffiti on the sculpture, later Kapoor had to backtrack and opt for a partial covering of the graffiti using gold leaf. However, the artist is appealing against the local government decision declaring that: "Culture has been a victim of vandalism and hate and if vandalism and hate stops public experimentation, we all lose. If we stop that, we might as well live in a fascist state."
In an interview with the Artnet website
(https://news.artnet.com/art-world/anish-kapoor-versailles-sculpture-vagi...) Kapoor said the choice to leave bits of the graffiti visible was deliberate. The artist said: "I have to transform it, unravelling, finding an answer to a crime of hate and turn it into something else".
Anish Kapoor’s exhibition is open until the end of November 2015. For more information please visit:
http://en.chateauversailles.fr/news-/events/exhibitions/kapoor-versailles