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Serial Spanish nudist strips off in front of Michelangelo’s David

Italy’s most artistic streaker is back.

Serial Spanish nudist strips off in front of Michelangelo's David
Michelangelo's David is possibly the world's most famous male nude. Photo: Gabriel Bouys/AFP

Three years after he stripped off in front of Botticelli’s Venus and six months since he frolicked in the Trevi Fountain in Rome, a Spanish man once again surprised art lovers by posing nude in front of another Italian masterpiece: Michelangelo’s David. 

The Spaniard, a “performer” named Adrián Pino Olivera, removed his clothes last Sunday and stood naked next to the monumental sculpture, which takes pride of place in Florence’s Galleria dell’Accademia.

He shouted “incomprehensible phrases” while a companion filmed him, Il Messaggero reported.

Security guards rushed to cover him and eventually escorted him out of the museum, which attracts thousands of visitors each day.

Police were asked to charge the exhibitionist with obscenity, given that his performance took place in a public place frequented by minors, but it’s not clear if any investigation is underway.

The museum’s director, Cecilie Hollberg, called the incident “sad and ridiculous”.

Olivera, however, calls it art.

His public nudity is part of “Project V”, his attempt to “transmit and claim the divine power of the Feminine in the face of the decline of the contemporary male world”, according to his website.

Each performance incorporates some sort of V sign for Venus, the Roman goddess of love.

Since his 2014 debut in front of Sandro Botticelli’s Birth of Venus at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Olivera has appeared nude in front of iconic artworks across Europe, including the Winged Victory of Samothrace in the Louvre in Paris, John Everett Millais’s Ophelia at London’s Tate Britain and The Nude Maja by Francisco Goya at the Museo del Prado in Madrid.

On April 22nd, he skinny-dipped in the Trevi Fountain in Rome while bemused tourists snapped photos. 

We don’t know where he’ll strike next, but we do have a clue as to when: Olivera says he always chooses the 22nd day of the month for a performance, since V is the 22nd letter of the Roman alphabet.  

FLORENCE

British man found dead in Florence hotel named as ex-rugby league player

A man found dead in a hotel room in Florence was named by Italian media on Sunday as British former rugby league player Ricky Bibey.

British man found dead in Florence hotel named as ex-rugby league player

A man was found dead on Saturday in the Hotel Continentale after a woman he was with cried out for help, according to unconfirmed media reports.

Italian news outlets have identified the victim as Ricky Bibey, a two-time Challenge Cup winner with Wigan Warriors and St Helens. Police have yet to confirm the dead man’s identity.

Super League tweeted it was “saddened to hear of the passing of Ricky Bibey”.

“We thank Ricky for his contributions to the game and send our condolences to Ricky’s family and friends during this time”.

A maid rushed in to find the 43-year old woman bleeding heavily from serious injuries, and she was rushed to hospital, La Nazione daily newspaper said.

Bibey, 40, appeared to have died of a heart attack, it said.

Other guests at the Continentale, just next to the Tuscan city’s famous Ponte Vecchio bridge, reportedly heard shouts coming from the room.

Police seized objects including items possibly used in an erotic game, La Nazione said.

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