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Artist who nailed his scrotum to ground convinces interrogator to switch sides

Joseph McCormick July 29, 2015
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Russian artist Pyotr Pavlensky has caused controversy with his extreme art forms, but managed to convince his interrogator to switch sides. Please note this article contains images some may find disturbing.

Pavlensky, a performance artist, previously nailed his scrotum to the cobbles in Moscow’s Red Square in protest against Russia’s anti-gay laws.

He previously cut off his ear atop a psychiatric institution.

Pavel Yasman was tasked with the interrogation of St Petersburg artist Pavlensky, but after several months stepped down from his position at the Investigative Committee.

Pyotr Pavlensky3

Pavlensky nailed his scrotum to the ground in Red Square

His decision came after conversations as part of a Russian government case against the artist and activist.

Pavlensky has caused controversy with his art, which has included sewing his mouth shut, wrapping himself in barbed wire, cutting off his ear and nailing his scrotum to the Red Square.

The Committee of which Yasman was formerly an employee is often compared to the FBI in the US.

He has also received a licence to practice law, and has said he would even represent Pavlensky in a court hearing earlier in July.

Speaking to the Moscow Times, Yasman said: “Pavlensky is a very strong person. I think it’s great to believe so fervently in what you are doing.”

The artist was charged with vandalism linked to a historic bridge in St Petersburg, where he burned stacks of tyres in an attempt to recreate scenes from the capital of the Ukraine.

If found guilty, Pavlensky could face up to three years in jail.

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Pyotr Pavlensky stitched his mouth shut (Image: Facebook)

Recordings of interrogations over the months showed Yasman’s attitude change towards Pavlensky, who apparently convinces him that he was being used by the Government for the work he was doing.

Yasman said he thought the artist’s work had changed many minds.

Pavelensky has carried out similar acts in the past, including sewing his lips together against the jailing of two members of Pussy Riot, and wrapping his body in barbed wire outside a government building.

In his previous performance, he attacked Russia’s “police state.”

At the first hearingin Pavlensky’s trial earlier in July, Yasman was rejected as his lawyer, as he is an interested party.

The hearing will resume in September.


More: activist, Artist, Europe, pavel yasman, protest, Pyotr Pavlensky, Russia, Russia

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