A Conspiracy Theorist Who Vandalized Hunter Biden’s New York Gallery Has Been Arrested

The vandal tried to write “Daddy is a war criminal" on the wall.

Rod Webber vandalizing Georges Berges Gallery in New York.

A conspiracy theorist filmmaker was arrested last week for vandalizing the New York gallery representing U.S. president Joe Biden’s 51-year-old son, Hunter Biden.

The vandal, Rod Webber, entered Georges Berges Gallery on Friday afternoon with a can of pink spray paint in hand. (Webber later claimed on Twitter that it was a bottle of washable hair spray.) He scrawled the word “daddy” on a wall and damaged a painting by another artist worth $14,500 in the process, according to the New York Post

Webber, who live-streamed the incident on his Facebook page, later explained that he was trying to write “Daddy is a war criminal,” and argued that Hunter Biden’s work was a front for laundering money. None of Biden’s artwork was on display at the time. 

The attack came just one day after the Washington Post reported on an apparent agreement between the White House and Berges to keep the sales details of Hunter Biden’s paintings confidential, including from his father. The deal was said to be a way to deter bad actors from purchasing artworks at high prices in order to curry favor with the White House; critics have argued that the lack of transparency has the opposite effect.

The one-hour and twenty minute-long video Webber recorded begins with him standing outside the gallery’s storefront space, musing on Joe Biden’s “shenanigans,” saying the president has worked with “segregationists and klansmen.” The footage then follows him inside as he tries to finish his message before being detained by a gallery employee. 

“You’re assaulting me,” Webber dryly says a number of times before being wrestled to the ground. An unidentified person who constrained him said he was performing a “citizen’s arrest.”

Webber is no stranger to art world stunting. He was previously arrested at Art Basel Miami Beach in December 2019, when he wrote the words “Jeffrey Epstein Didn’t Kill Himself” in red lipstick on the same wall to which Maurizio Cattelan infamously taped a $120,000 banana.

For his latest antic, Webber was charged with assault and criminal mischief, according to the Post. He appeared before a judge at an arraignment in a Manhattan criminal court this weekend. 

In a cryptic blog post published on his personal website ahead of the incident, Webber wrote: “New Daddy is same as the old Daddy. Bombings in Syria and Iraq. Endless wars. Weapons of Mass Destruction was a lie. Art Gallery promotes crime family.”

“To the good people at Georges Berges,” he added, “If you support ending the wars, leave my art be…”

When reached for comment, Webber told Artnet News, “The intention of my actions on Friday [was] to create a new piece of art—and I did.”

Representatives from Berges declined to weigh in.  

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