Elderly woman who botched religious fresco demands royalties
Posted by Mr DoctorE on September 20, 2012
Cecilia Gimenez, who is in her 80s, made headlines across the world after attempting a DIY restoration that left the 19th century fresco of Christ at her local church in Borja resembling a monkey.
The altered image of Ecce Homo – Behold the Man – became an internet sensation and sent thousands of curious sightseers to the Sanctuario de Misericordia to laugh at her handiwork.
Authorities threatened to sue Mrs Gimenez for her unauthorised attempt, which she insisted had been carried out with only good intentions because the painting was in need of repair.
But popularity for the modified masterpiece grew with even budget airline Ryanair offering cheap deals to nearby Zaragoza airport encouraging “pilgrims” to visit the work that was quickly dubbed “Ecce Mono” – Behold the Monkey.
An internet petition to keep the repair job garnered widespread support and seizing an opportunity to swell its coffers, the church began levying a 4 euro (£3) entrance fee on visitors, earning 2,000 euros in the first four days