Artist Brett Murray's controversial painting.
Artist Brett Murray's controversial painting.
Caught in the act - defacing Brett Murray's zumaspear painting. Caught on film by eNews. Photo: Alastair Otter, IOL Editor
Caught in the act - defacing Brett Murray's zumaspear painting. Caught on film by eNews. Photo: Alastair Otter, IOL Editor

The controversial painting of President Jacob Zuma in the Goodman Gallery in Johannesburg has been defaced, gallery staff confirmed on Tuesday.

A man is being held by the gallery security team.

“The work has been painted over with black and red paint,” a spokesman said.

e-News footage captured an older white man and a young black man defacing the portrait.

Police are on their way to the scene.

Meanwhile hundreds of people carrying posters slamming the painting toyi-toyied outside the High Court in Johannesburg on Tuesday.

The High Court in Johannesburg ruledthat the ANC's court challenge to havethecontroversial painting removed from the Goodman Gallery will be broadcast live on television on Thursday.

Wearing T-shirts proclaiming: “President Zuma has the right to human dignity and privacy” in the same red and black as the Brett Murray painting the ANC wants removed, his supporters sang songs and ululated in Kruis Street opposite the court.

Glossy posters with the ANC logo saying “We say no! To artistic expression” were held aloft as a man dressed in military camouflage led the group in song and chanting.

A large ANC branded stage backed into Pritchard Street opposite court and traffic was diverted for the application by Zuma and the ANC.

They want the Goodman Gallery, which is exhibiting the painting which shows Zuma's genitals, to remove it because it violates his and the party's right to dignity. They also want City Press to remove images of the painting from its website.

Both the the gallery and City Press have refused. - Sapa, IOL