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Cape Town - South African performance artist Steven Cohen was briefly detained for exhibitionism in Paris for what is being described as a “coq stunt” at the foot of the Eiffel Tower.
The French news site RFi reported that “the eccentric artist paraded around Trocadero Square facing the Eiffel Tower at 9.30am, clad in a bird costume, high heels and a living rooster tied to his genitals”.
Cohen graduated with a BA from Wits University, then studied at the Ruth Prowse School of Art in Woodstock, Cape Town. He has a long history of performance art around the world.
Cohen lives in Lille in northern France and is due to participate in the Paris Autumn Festival from Friday until September 21.
Cohen reportedly wore high-heeled platform shoes and “a garter, thigh-length tights and long red gloves, with long, wild feathers emanating from his head and hands”.
He danced with the cock for about 10 minutes, before being arrested by the police, his lawyer, Agnes Tricoire, told French daily Le Parisien.
He was charged with indecent exposure before being released.
His performance art piece “Sphincterography: The Tour – Johannesburg (The Politics of an Arsehole)” has been included in this year’s Festival d’Automne at La Maison Rouge in Paris, the French press reported.
On his website, Cohen reports: “I don’t actually know what the f... performance art is, yet I’m brilliant at it.”