Charles Manson’s Son’s Bizarre Performance Defends Murderous Father

He aimed to show that Manson's 1970s trial was "unfair."

Matthew Roberts performing as his biological father, Charles Manson, in The Retrial of Charles Manson, as compared to an archival photo of Manson. Photo: Mark Kreusch, courtesy Splash News.
Matthew Roberts performing as his biological father, Charles Manson, in The Retrial of Charles Manson, as compared to an archival photo of Manson. Photo: Mark Kreusch, courtesy Splash News.

In a bizarre performance art piece, infamous serial killer Charles Manson, as played a man who claims to be his son, was retried at Los Angeles’s Vector Gallery on December 28, reports the Daily Mail.

Matthew Roberts, age 48, was purportedly fathered by Manson during a 1967 orgy, during which the murderous cult leader allegedly raped his mother. So far, DNA evidence proving Manson’s parentage has been inconclusive, but the physical resemblance between the two is striking.

Gallerist and artist J.J. Brine staged the performance, titled The Retrial of Charles Manson, to show how Manson’s 1970s trial, in which he was convicted of masterminding the murder of actress Sharon Tate, wife of Roman Polanski, and three of her friends, was “unfair.”

Matthew Roberts performs as his biological father, Charles Manson, in The Retrial of Charles Manson. Photo: Mark Kreusch, courtesy Splash News.

Matthew Roberts performs as his biological father, Charles Manson, in The Retrial of Charles Manson.
Photo: Mark Kreusch, courtesy Splash News.

The performance saw actors, playing the judge and the prosecutor, pour water on each other and hand out oranges to the crowd. Though the audience was originally told they would decide the verdict, the judge told the crowd that every man judges himself.

This isn’t the gallery’s first edgy performance piece. In October, Vector held a Satanic mass in Bushwick (Brine is a self-proclaimed satanist, and the gallery’s Tumblr page notes that “VECTOR Gallery is The AntiChrist”). Last December, the gallery’s booth at Select Fair in Miami Beach featured a naked woman who’s vagina was somehow operating as a cell phone charger. Hip-hop star Usher was among those who stopped by for some extra juice.

The gallery moved to Los Angeles from a space on the Lower East Side in August, replicating its silver and neon interior, which has long displayed glow-in-the-dark paintings of Manson.

Matthew Roberts performs as his biological father, Charles Manson, in The Retrial of Charles Manson. Photo: Mark Kreusch, courtesy Splash News.

Matthew Roberts performs as his biological father, Charles Manson, in The Retrial of Charles Manson.
Photo: Mark Kreusch, courtesy Splash News.

Brine met Roberts in 2012 “through the witchy orbit of the disparate factions operating as The Manson Family On The Internet,” he told disinformation.

Manson is now 81. Roberts, who was adopted by a family in Illinois, tracked down his biological mother, and through him, Manson, in 2001. The two now have a relationship, exchanging letters as Manson serves a life prison sentence.

“I didn’t want to believe it,” Roberts told NBC Los Angeles of when he learned the secret of his birth. “I was frightened and angry. It’s like finding out that Hitler is your father.” Nevertheless, he said, “he’s my biological father—I can’t help but have some kind of emotional connection.”

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