It's no secret that in this social media-driven day and age, some of the coolest attractions are designed around the fact that we might photograph them. There's even a saying: "Do it for the 'gram," aka, "Get that awesome pic so you can show off to all your friends how awesome you are!"
Nothing wrong with that, really, if it pushes you to try new things. But remember to watch your step when you selfie, as a young woman recently learned the hard way at an art exhibit in Los Angeles.
The incident went down — literally — at The 14th Factory, where a contemporary art exhibit called "Hypercaine" was on display in an open warehouse space. The exhibit featured rows of elaborate crowns, some made from precious materials, displayed on freestanding pedestals.
Footage surfaced online on Thursday that showed a woman crouching down for a selfie in front of one of the pieces ... before falling back into it, causing a domino effect that took down the entire row.
According to The 14th Factory, the fall took place about two weeks ago. "The girl came in with her friend and, although we told everyone to be careful, the staff was in conversation with someone at the time and was not paying full attention ... As a non-profit, we don't have the budget for lots of staff or security," read a statement from Simon Birch, the founder and artist behind The 14th Factory.
Birch noted, "She was horrified and super upset and we took down her details, but decided not to take action as it was clearly an accident and she's a student."
While no one was physically hurt, there was some serious sticker shock when it came to the damage. A few of the more delicate crowns took a beating, and Birch estimates that based on the going rate for his work, the cost equates to about $200,000.
"There were sixteen (crowns) on that row, some 3D printed in nylon or gold plated brass, some a mix of both, and some in other materials such as granite and marble," Birch's statement explained. "We fixed most, but there are a few delicate ones that are still in the process of being repaired and might be permanently damaged .... Value in the art world is a complicated thing."
People have had plenty of questions, with some even speculating that this might have been a publicity stunt to bring attention to the exhibit. A representative confirmed to TODAY that it was, in fact, an accident — and that it wasn't the artists who released the security footage, but a friend of a staff member.
"Although it was an unfortunate event, we are grateful for the unexpected exposure and wish to direct the attention to what is important — the art in the space and the artists behind them," Birch's statement said.
On that note, the exhibit, which features several other rooms and work by Birch and 20 other collaborators, runs through the end of the month. You can get your tickets here.
But maybe leave your phone in your pocket.