Page last updated at 17:17 GMT, Thursday, 17 December 2009

Student fined for smashed window art work

Edinburgh Sheriff Court
Sentence was passed at Edinburgh Sheriff Court

An Edinburgh art student who smashed a gallery window with a pole in a project he claimed was the "most important work" of his life has been fined £200.

Kevin Harman, 27, recorded the incident at The Collective Gallery in Cockburn Street and the footage was shown at the New Haven Gallery in Brunswick Street.

Harman admitted disorderly conduct and breaching the peace between 17 October and 3 December 2009.

The Edinburgh College of Art said its student had done the project privately.

Fiscal depute Malcolm Stewart told Edinburgh Sheriff Court Harman had written to the gallery informing them of his decision to break the window for his project called Brick.

The glazier was in attendance when the window was smashed and it was fixed within 25 minutes
Mathew Patrick
Defence agent

Mr Stewart said that he failed to write again to say when he would break the window, which left staff in a "state of apprehension" as to when it would happen.

On 23 November the gallery was closed to the public for a meeting when there were a couple of loud bangs and the sound of breaking glass.

Mr Stewart said: "It is fair to say the occupants of the gallery were upset despite having received prior warning this was going to happen."

The court heard staff discovered the window had been smashed with a pole instead of a brick and phoned police.

Damage to the window was £350 but Harman had a glazier on hand to repair it.

Defence agent Mathew Patrick said: "He accepts at no time did the gallery give him the green light to go forward with this but according to Harman they certainly did not say no.

"The glazier was in attendance when the window was smashed and it was fixed within 25 minutes.

"He took great steps to make sure there was no one in the vicinity who could be harmed."

Outside court Harman said he wanted to apologise for his behaviour.

He described the piece "the most important work of my life" and said it was "respected".

An Edinburgh College of Art spokeswoman said: "Kevin Harman is a postgraduate student of Sculpture at Edinburgh College of Art, but his action at the Collective Gallery on Saturday 28 November 2009 was not part of his work or study at the college nor is it condoned by the college authorities.

"On this occasion he acted on his own initiative in his individual capacity as a practising artist, and is thus solely responsible for his actions."

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