Tuesday, April 1, 2008

SAN FRANCISCO Art Institute halts exhibition showing killing of animals

Although I am vehemently against all unnecessary pain and fear in the killing of animals for consumption, I do believe that community dialogues and public forums for discussion are absolutely essential in not only the artistic and contemporary art field, but more importantly, in the support of complete and absolute academic freedom of expression. Unfortunately, the exhibition is currently being deinstalled, however I have requested permission to view the exhibition by appointment and to support a letter to Mayor Gavin Newsom as well as joining other academic and museum institutions in providing a future venue for a safe symposium for the community to express themselves. I am shocked and appalled that some of the protesting groups have resorted to sexual and physical threats on staff and students, which is not only irrational, but ironical and degrading to the group and their mission. --Eve

SAN FRANCISCO Art Institute halts exhibition showing killing of animals
Workers threatened; video unclear about why deaths filmed
Ilana DeBare, Chronicle Staff Writer
Sunday, March 30, 2008

"Citing threats of violence by animal rights activists, the San Francisco Art Institute said Saturday that it is canceling a controversial exhibition that included video clips of animals being bludgeoned to death, as well as a public forum it had scheduled to address the controversy.
"We've gotten dozens of threatening phone calls that targeted specific staff people with death threats, threats of violence and threats of sexual assaults," said Art Institute President Chris Bratton. "We remain committed to freedom of speech as fundamental to this institution, but we have to take people's safety very seriously."
The exhibit that sparked the controversy was a one-person show by Paris artist Adel Abdessemed called "Don't Trust Me," which opened March 19.
Along with a variety of other elements, the show included a series of video loops of animals being bludgeoned to death with a sledgehammer in front of a brick wall. The animals killed included a pig, goat, deer, ox, horse and sheep...."

Artist Adel Abdessemed:

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