(The Moscow Times) - Two members of an art collective were detained for flinging holy water at the Moscow mausoleum containing Vladimir Lenin's corpse, in an apparent bid to resurrect the revolutionary leader.
In video footage of the incident published by news site Grani.ru, artists Oleg Basov and Yevgeny Avilov can be seen emerging from a nearby church and approaching the mausoleum with two bottles of water labeled with crucifixes.
Basov and Avilov, members of the art collective Blue Horseman, then managed to bypass a security gate before flinging holy water at the walls of the mausoleum while chanting “Arise and be gone!”
Their performance, entitled “The Exorcist: Desecration of the Mausoleum” took place on Monday, when Orthodox Christians celebrated Epiphany — a religious holiday marking the baptism of Jesus.
The two men were soon apprehended and taken to a nearby police station, where they were detained overnight, police monitoring site OVD-Info reported.
Basov and Avilov now face charges of disorderly conduct, which is punishable by a fine of up to 2,500 rubles ($38) or 15 days in jail.
Vladimir Lenin, whose embalmed corpse has been housed in the mausoleum since shortly after his death in 1924 barring a wartime evacuation, was one of the founding fathers of the Bolshevik party. He famously rejected religion as “opium for the masses.”