Officials at the National Trust charity in the UK were dismayed earlier this year after bright blue markings were found daubed all over the face, arms and torso of a statue by the sculptor John Bacon at Croome Court in Worcestershire. The 230-year-old statue of the Roman Naiade (water nymph), known as Sabrina, was covered in childish scrawls, prompting nervous parents to wonder if their own offspring had grabbed a crayon and committed this crime against art.
According to the Birmingham Mail, numerous people took to Twitter to comment. A contributor called Sarah Sheward tweeted that “in an ideal world this wouldn’t happen… parents should be watching [their children] but have we all not looked away at some point?” Jason Thompson from the Culture Northumberland cultural organisation cheekily added: “The most middle-class vandalism I’ve ever heard of. Can we send aid of some kind to the people of Worcestershire? Is there a helpline for them with trained counsellors? And don’t they have children there?” We think the expressive child-like marks and interest in Roman history point to a Midlands Cy Twombly in the making.