Atty: “Night Sky” Slasher Acted Under Mental Stress

Museum guard vandalizes $1.2 M Art Institute painting

An attorney for a security guard who has pleaded guilty to "institutional vandalism" claims his client's slashed of a $1.2 million Art Institute painting on loan to a Pittsburgh museum acted under mental stress.

Timur Serebrykov, 28, who was a guard at Pittsburgh's Carnegie Museum of Art, reportedly told police that he cut the artwork with a key last May because "I didn't like the painting.''

Experts at the Art Institute have tried to repair the painting, "Night Sky No. 2," by Latvian artist Vija Celmins, but say that the painting has lost about $240,000 in value due to the "large vertical gouge" down the middle of the canvas.

Serebrykov will be sentenced on April 7.

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