It's always tempting to try and make human statues move by pulling silly faces, staring them dead in the eye or making loud noises.
The street entertainers are usually experts at ignoring low level harassment but this shocking video shows they can move incredibly quickly when necessary.
A gold-clad performer on a bustling street in New York's Times Square can be seen springing into action and kicking a would-be thief in the face after he tried to 'snatch money' from his donations box.
In the shocking clip, captured by a member of the public, a man wearing a black tracksuit walks up to the street artist and puts his hand into the tip pot.
But instead of dropping in a few coins, the man appears to grab a fistful of dollar bills.
Seconds later, the living statue kicks the man in the face - the blow is so hard that the robber falls back onto the pavement.
The entertainer jumps down from his podium and the pair exchange a few words as the man attempts to get back onto his feet.
It is not clear whether he was injured in the incident or if it has been reported to police.
The video was filmed by Jason King, who posted the footage online alongside the caption: 'SO THIS HAPPENED OUTSIDE #macdonaldstimessquare.'
It's not the first time a human statue has had their patience tested.
In 2020 a street performer in Surfer’s Paradise, Australia, lost his cool and punched an 'annoying' punter in the face.