Remember the Ruined Fresco? Cecilia Gomez teaches Us How To Make Mistakes Pay

The gift that keeps on giving…

I mean, that seems to be the takeaway to me.

An 82-year-old Spanish pensioner who gained global notoriety for ruining a fresco of Christ in a clumsy restoration has signed a lucrative royalty deal for the merchandising of her ‘art’.

Cecilia Gimenez famously turned an oil fresco painted in the Misericordia Church in Borja, north eastern Spain, into an abomination described by the BBC as resembling a “crayon sketch of a very hairy monkey.”

Her restoration of the 1910 depiction of Christ called Ecce Homo (Behold the Man) by Spanish artist Elias Garcia Martinez, made headlines all over the world.

However, media attention turned Gimenez’s handiwork into a massive touristic attraction.

Visitors craving to have a close look at the botched restoration poured into Borja, prompting low-cost airline Ryanair to offer special fares to the nearby town of Zaragoza.

Church officials also decided to keep the fresco as it was, and introduce an entry fee.

One year on some 57,000 people have paid €1 to see the restoration, according to the foundation that manages the church, which said the money raised so far from ticket sales has been used to improve the building and cover personnel costs.

Gimenz, who first demanded her share of the takings in September last year, has now reached an agreement with the foundation over her work’s image rights.

The pensioner is entitled to 49% of profits generated from the merchandising of the restored Ecce Homo.

Read the whole thing.

I think Stephen Colbert was right about Cecelia.

  • Maggie Goff

    Oh lord, that Colbert video is one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen!!

  • Jordan

    Whoo, I hadn’t watched that Colbert clip before. That just had me rolling.

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/yimcatholic/ Frank Weathers

    And turn it into an annuity. That’s what is amazing.


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