Vandals have broken into a Paris art museum during a street festival and severely damaged a classic by French impressionist Claude Monet.

Officials with the Orsay Museum said Sunday the vandals entered a back door and punched a fist through the 19th century masterpiece The Bridge at Argenteuil,  leaving a 10 centimeter gash in the canvas. The intruders fled when they set off an alarm.

Museum officials call the damage heartbreaking, but say the painting can be repaired.

The incident took place during an all-night Parisian street festival and raises more questions about security French museums after several other crimes.

A woman is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday for allegedly smearing lipstick on a painting by American artist Cy Twombly in July in the city of Avignon.

In August, masked gunmen burst into a museum in Nice and stole four valuable paintings.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.