fb-pixel

It’s nothing personal, says Ben Ewen-Campen, he just doesn’t think French impressionist Pierre-Auguste Renoir is much of a painter. Monday, the Harvard postdoc joined some like-minded aesthetes for a playful protest outside the Museum of Fine Arts. The rally, which mostly bewildered passersby, was organized by Max Geller, creator of the Instagram account Renoir Sucks at Painting, who wants the MFA to take its Renoirs off the walls and replace them with something better. Holding homemade signs reading “God Hates Renoir” and “Treacle Harms Society,” the protesters ate cheese pizza purchased by Geller, and chanted: “Put some fingers on those hands! Give us work by Paul Gauguin !” and “Other art is worth your while! Renoir paints a steaming pile!” Craig Ronan, an artist from Somerville, learned about the protest on Instagram and decided to join. “I don’t have any relationship with these people aside from wanting artistic justice,” he said. The museum hasn’t commented on the fledgling movement, but a few folks walking by Monday seemed amused. “I love their sense of irony,” said Liz Byrd, a grandmother from Phoenix who spent the morning in the museum with her daughter and grandchild. “I love Renoir, but I think this is great.”

Sebastian Smee: Renoir protest at MFA is funny, but sophomoric

Advertisement



A group of protesters outside the Museum of Fine Arts.
A group of protesters outside the Museum of Fine Arts.Lane Turner/Globe Staff/Globe Staff
Max Geller (foreground) and other protesters outside the Museum of Fine Arts.
Max Geller (foreground) and other protesters outside the Museum of Fine Arts.Lane Turner/Globe Staff/Globe Staff
Ben Ewen-Campen carried a sign in front of the Museum of Fine Arts.
Ben Ewen-Campen carried a sign in front of the Museum of Fine Arts. Lane Turner/Globe Staff

More MFA coverage:

Sebastian Smee: Renoir protest at MFA is funny, but sophomoric

Malcolm Rogers, on the threshold of a new life

Counter-protesters join kimono fray at MFA

Easy-going fashions at an MFA party


Names can be reached at names@globe.com. Follow Mark Shanahan on Twitter @MarkAShanahan.