Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Are they really so stupid at BALTIC????
I was perusing the artforum.com homepage when I came across this snippet of information. Censorship in the art is not new, but an exhibition center alerting the police about its own exhibition content??? Hello???
Did they even have a look at their checklist prior to organizing the show? If you need to remove something under pressure from whatever upcoming imaginary censors, why call in the police for God sake? Remove that image yourself before the opening if you are such wimps.
The way the article is phrased you would think the curators had no idea what was happening inside their own gallery space. Jerome Sans, please tell me it ain't so.
I'd be ready to bet instead that some non-curatorial staff decided to be offended and called in the poulets without telling their supervisor first. I haven't seen the incriminated picture, but knowing Goldin's work I'd bet it's a snapshot of some mundane scene, since she doesn't really stage her pictures. I can't comment on it, but if staff have a problem with some artworks they need to address whatever problem from within their institution.
Personally I find David Hamilton's photographs much more obscene than whatever Goldin has ever produced. You know, these soft-porn ubiquitous color scenes you could spot on every bathroom wall during the 1970s. Repulsive with their blurred pastel atmosphere. There's an expression for this type of imagery in French: cucul la praline.
A bit of required classic Freud reading on children sexuality for the cops and the BALTIC staff wouldn't hurt, I guess. Or look at some Greuze paintings for a look at historical obscenity. Case in point: the picture above is a Greuze painting of a young girl weeping for her dead bird, i.e. her virginity. She doesn't seem any day older than 12, no? 18th century porn for you, dear reader.