A Montana woman was arrested Wednesday at a Colorado museum after she destroyed an artwork that some observers say depicts Jesus engaged in a sex act.
The Denver Post reported that Kathleen Folden of Kalispell, Mont., was taken into police custody after she entered the Loveland Museum/Gallery in Loveland, Colo., and destroyed a work called “The Misadventures of Romantic Cannibals,” a lithograph by Enrique Chagoya.
Luckily, contorversial artworks never make the ARTKABINETT social network too unruly. We only get out of hand if the wine is bad or the service is rude.
The police told The Post that Ms. Folden had used a crowbar or similar tool to break the plexiglass in front of the work and then tore it up. She has been charged with criminal mischief, a felony punishable by a fine of up to $2,000.
For several days the museum has faced protests for displaying the work, which also depicts comic book characters, images from Mexican pornography and Mayan symbols.
The Post reported that Daryle Klassen, a Loveland city councilman, objected to the display during a council meeting, calling it “smut” and adding, “That’s not what our community is about.” Some Roman Catholics in Loveland had also sought to have the work taken down.
Mr. Chagoya, a professor of art and art history at Stanford University, told The Post that the lithograph was a commentary on revelations of child abuse by Catholic priests.
Enrique Chagoya is a Mexican-born painter and print-maker. His subject is the changing nature of culture. His biography is located in our Kab Pedia section.
As a student, he was sent to work on rural development projects, an experience that strengthened his interest in political and social activism.
He lives in San Francisco and teaches art at Stanford University, where he received the Dean's Award in the Humanities in 1998.
His works are held in the collections of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, The Contemporary Museum, Honolulu, the Los Angeles County Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York City), the Museum of Modern Art (New York City), the National Museum of American Art (Washington, D. C.), the New York Public Library, the San Jose Museum of Art (San Jose, California), the Art Institute of Chicago and the Whitney Museum of American Art.
His controversial artwork “The Misadventures of the Romantic Cannibals”, which portrays Jesus, and possibly other religious figures, in a context of ambiguous sexual content, is part of 10-artist exhibit called “The Legend of Bud Shark and His Indelible Ink” which is on display in a city-run art museum in Loveland, Colorado.
The copy on exhibit in Loveland, one of a limited edition of 30 lithographs, was destroyed by a woman wielding a crowbar on October 6, 2010.
According to the artist the work is a commentary on the Catholic sex abuse cases.
“My work is about critiquing institutions and politics,” Mr. Chagoya said. “I wasn’t trying to portray Christ; it’s a collage of cutouts from different books.”
courtesy, Dave Itzkoff, NY Times