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An Amateur Artist "Restored" A 500-Year-Old Religious Statue And Oh, Jesus, No

"These images really were in need of painting."

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It's no stretch to say Spain has a bit of a bad reputation when it comes to restoring works of art. There is, of course, the 2012 "restoration" of Ecce Homo, aka Beast Jesus...

Elías García Martínez / Public Domain / Via commons.wikimedia.org, Cesar Manso / AFP / Getty Images

...as well as this amateur restoration of a 16th-century wooden carving of St. George from June of this year.

ACRE Restorers Association

Well, add to that list what recently happened to this 15th-century wooden sculpture of Mary, St. Anne, and baby Jesus, which adorn a chapel in El Rañadoiro, Asturias.

Dsf / AFP / Getty Images

Having decided it looked "horrible," María Luisa Menéndez, a local tobacco shop owner, took it upon herself to give the statue a neon paint job. Here's what it looks like now:

Dsf / AFP / Getty Images

“I’m not a professional painter, but I’ve always enjoyed it, and these images really were in need of painting,” she told El Comercio. “So I painted them the best I could, with the colors that seemed right, and the neighbors like it.”

Dsf / AFP / Getty Images

To recap, Jesus then:

Dsf / AFP / Getty Images

Jesus now:

Dsf / AFP / Getty Images

BUT THE NEIGHBORS LIKE IT!!!

Dsf / AFP / Getty Images

For its part, ACRE, the Spanish art conservation association, called Menéndez's work a "plunder."

De nuevo gritamos #SOSPatrimonio. ¿A nadie le importa este expolio continuado en nuestro país? ¿Qué tipo de sociedad permite pasiva que destruyan ante sus ojos el legado de sus antepasados? https://t.co/iCEqmxtvDc https://t.co/PhW7BGfZGc

According to the New York Times, Menéndez may also face legal consequences.

In conclusion:

Dsf / AFP / Getty Images

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