Joseph Gibbons, a filmmaker and former M.I.T. professor, is facing felony robbery charges in two states after after allegedly filmed himself stealing $1,000 from a Manhattan bank on New Year's Eve and $3,000 from a bank in Rhode Island in November, the New York Post reports. Gibbons.

According to the Post, Gibbons told his cellmate Keylan Sherrard he committed the robberies for art. "He was doing research for a film," said Sherrard. "It's not a crime; it's artwork… He's an intellectual."

Gibbons entered a Capital One branch at Bowery and Grand Street in Chinatown around 2 p.m. on New Year's Eve carrying a video camera, the Post reports. He handed the teller a note "demanding a donation for his church."

In an interview with Big RED & Shiny before the 2006 Whitney Biennial, Gibbons discussed the autobiographical elements of his work:

I started out making more abstract films or structural films and it wasn't until I discovered using myself as material that I thought I had something. But I had to keep making more—I needed content. By finding flaws and working on those—that was a goldmine. I just worried if I had enough problems within me that I could exploit. So when I ran of my own—I started creating them.

Bail was set at $50,000.

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