It's been described as "a crayon sketch of a very hairy monkey in an ill-fitting tunic" and compared to a sloth, but the world's worst restoration of a century old Spanish fresco has delighted so many over the last few days that thousands have gathered to object to its destruction.

The newly restored version of Ecce Homo "reveals a subtle critique of creationist theories of the Church" with hints of Goya and Munch, reads the petition signed by over 10,000 people and climbing.

Meanwhile, Cecilia Giménez, the octogenarian who allegedly took it upon herself to touch up the decaying artwork, has made an appearance on television to claim her restoration effort was sanctioned by the priest at the church where the fresco resides.

"The priest knew it," she told a local TV station, adding that her work was done in full view of clergy and congregants.

That's cold comfort for Teresa Garcia, the granddaughter of painter Elías García Martínez, who says Giménez destroyed her grandfather's painting. "Until now she just painted on the tunic, but the problem started when she painted the head as well," Garcia said.

Giménez insists that she was just trying to revive her favorite depiction of Jesus and meant no harm. Still, that might not be a good enough excuse for local authorities, who are considering charging Giménez with vandalism.

[H/T: Newser, image via Wikipedia, video via Telegraph]