Life imitates art, but sometimes art imitates itself.
This is the case for an art exhibit of a banana that has now been eaten for the second time since its debut in 2019.
An art student studying at Seoul National University in South Korea took a bite out of Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan’s “Comedian” exhibit at Seoul’s Leeum Museum of Art.
The artwork consists of a ripe banana channel taped to a wall. The student approached the exhibit, peeled off the peel, ate, and then stuck the peel back on the wall.
“The student told the museum that he ate it because he was hungry,” said a spokesman for the Leeum Museum CNN.
The museum afterwards replaced by the old one banana with a new one, saying that Cattelan was made aware of the incident but “had no reaction to it”. No further action will be taken towards the student.
“Comedian” first debuted in 2019 at Miami Art Basel, where one edition of it sold for $120,000 and two others sold to private collectors.
A performance artist named David Datuna decided to peel and eat the banana in front of the crowd of Basel visitors, removing the exhibit from the art exhibition.
“Based on recommendations, we removed the installation at 9 a.m. this morning,” dealer Emmanual Perrotin of the Perrotin Gallery said via social media in a statement following the removal, citing concerns about the safety of the crowds the exhibition attracted. “When Maurizio first told it I never imagined it could become what it is today. ‘Comedian’, with its simple composition, ultimately offered a complex reflection of ourselves. I am eternally grateful to Maurizio for giving me the portrayal of this turning point has entrusted conceptual work.”
Cattelan currently has a solo exhibit at the Leeum Museum called “WE,” which runs through July 16.