Friday, November 09, 2018

The Hidden Censorsip of Public Art

The FaceBookian Empire exploded last week when this happened (as detailed in WaPo article):
On Monday, the city’s arts agency added sweeping language to already approved grants requiring that artists and arts organizations avoid producing work that could be considered lewd, vulgar or political or be at risk of losing their funds.
The arts community protested, saying the amended contract infringed on their First Amendment rights. The DCCAH capitulated.
Read the whole article by Peggy McGlone here.

As I noted in several social media responses to this "reversal",  the censorship decision may be rescinded on paper... 

But... couhc, cough...

This isn't really much of a change... In fact - as noted in at least a trillion times in multiple posts over the decades in this blog, this censorship was already being done on the down low for decades and decades by arts commissions and arts organizations all over this great nation.

I suspect that the last time that DC as a city (Arts Commission, City, Federal, 1% for the Arts, Airport, etc.) - or for that fact, just about any other American city or state, or federal government arts entity - museums notwithstanding - acquired (for example) a nude work of art was probably during and by the WPA! 

Can you imagine what the reaction would be today, if anyone today designed naked statues such as the Roman Legionnaires in Union Station? 

Or the Sappho statue in Arlington cemetery

Prudes of all kinds would throw a moral fit! The PC crowd would go mad!

Feh! Betcha that nothing changes...