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Michael Stone 2

Michael Stone has been found guilty of trying to bomb Stormont.
Stone had attempted to enter Stormont on the day Ian Paisley and Martin McGuinness were due to be nominated as Northern Ireland’s new first and deputy first ministers.

The trial heard he pointed an imitation gun at a female security guard, ignited an improvised explosive device in a flight bag and threw it some yards from him. The bag contained explosive fireworks, flammable liquids, a butane gas canister and fuses. It failed to explode.

He was found to have seven nail bombs which the court heard were capable of causing death or serious injury to anyone in their proximity. Stone also had three knives, a hatchet and a garrotte.
Let us pause and pay tribute to a man who, quite apart from providing us with fantastic slapstick and a salient lesson to future would-be maniacs (viz: don’t try anything till you’re through the revolving door), is also responsible for one of the most remarkably shit legal defences of all time:
An art expert has said that having real nail bombs could “come under the ambit” of performance art, as long as there was no intention of setting them off.

Peter Bond, a senior art lecturer at St Martin’s College, London, was speaking at the trial of Michael Stone, 53. In his evidence Mr Bond, a professional performance artist, stressed that in performance art the most important thing was that people were not harmed.

Giving evidence on his own behalf, Stone had claimed the whole incident was performance art, designed to send a “proverbial rocket up the backsides” of the politicians. He claimed that all the items he had brought with him on that day had their own symbolism in what he described as “an installation”. [BBC]
The judge described this today as “wholly unconvincing”.

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
carsmilesteve
Nov. 14th, 2008 04:30 pm (UTC)
as an Actual Performance Artist (ret'd), i'd like to say that "in performance art the most important thing was that people were not harmed" is a load of RUBBISH, there have been COUNTLESS art things where people have been hurt in some way, generally the performer, but i think it's safe to say Michael Stone would've been injured as well as others...

Admittedly nailbombs and butane aren't usually used, but the odd shooting certainly, cutting flesh, taking druqs and general exhaustion type things are all part of the fabric of performance...
g0ldt00th
Nov. 14th, 2008 04:39 pm (UTC)
Even if it was deemed performance art, that still wouldn't stop it being illegal would it? Imagine the doors it would throw open to would-be criminals.

"Yes officer, I did stab him, but it was performance art, so it's OK"
caro7
Nov. 14th, 2008 05:45 pm (UTC)
I'm looking forward to seeing whether it will be in our 'Central St Martins in the media' staff bulletin next week. All publicity is...er...
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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