|Male nude posters plaster Vienna, draw complaints, organizers are being forced into cover-up mode |
Two people walk past a poster showing three naked men which has had red tape added to cover the sensitive parts of the three men, in Vienna, Austria. Poster reads: "Naked Men". A prestigious Vienna museum, The Leopold Museum, has been forced to cover up a graphic poster advertising a new show devoted to male nudity, after protests that it is offensive. The show "Nude Men from 1800 to Today" opened its doors Friday Oct. 20, looking at how artists have dealt with the theme of male nudity over the centuries. AP Photo/Ronald Zak.
By: George Jahn, Associated Press
VIENNA (AP).- Naked men of all sizes and shapes are appearing on Vienna kiosks as a prestigious museum kicks off an exhibit of male nudity.
But outside the exhibition, organizers are being forced into cover-up mode after a storm of complaints that the ad posters are offensive.
In a show titled "Nude Men from 1800 to Today," the Leopold Museum opened its doors Friday to examine how artists have dealt with the theme of male nudity over the centuries.
"Mr. Big" a four-meter (more than 12-foot) high full-frontal photo mounted on plywood and depicting a naked young man in an indolent sprawl is set up near the show's entrance, lest there be any doubt what visitors are about to see.
Inside, around 300 art works are on display including the controversial photograph that is raising the ire of Viennese. Created by French artists Pierre & Gilles, "Vive La France" shows three young, athletic men of different races wearing nothing but blue, white and red socks and soccer shoes.
No visitors were complaining Friday as they filed past that photo and even more graphic examples of male nudity, including some depicted in sex acts.
"I've seen worse on late-night TV," said Franz Steiner, 27, as he left the show.
Not so in the city. Posters of the three men were given impromptu fig-leafs lines of red tape covering their private parts.
The complaints clearly caught the museum by surprise. Vienna's turn-of-the-century decadence allowed erotic artists such as Egon Schiele and Gustav Klimt to flourish, and has turned these days into complacent acceptance of displays of the flesh. Today, lingerie ads are racy and one popular daily paper regularly features pictures of half-naked women.
Vienna's public transport system reacted laconically earlier this week to reports that a young woman on a downtown subway line was dressed in nothing but knee-high boots.
"We know that everyone has a different temperature comfort zone," the agency said in a statement. "But we do not think that our subways are so warm that one has to get undressed."
But there seems to be less tolerance for shows of male nudity. Museum officials say they received a flood of complaints by last week, mostly from outlying districts heavily populated by new immigrants from Muslim countries.
Museum director Tobias Natter says the flap serves to point out "that nobody gets offended by naked women, but with naked men: yes."
A poster near a school was also removed when parents complained.
"I can understand women with children who think that this is too wild, when the kids keep asking questions," said Susanne Eigner, a woman her 20s standing next to a still-uncovered poster.
But other reactions were positive.
"I like that we get to see naked men for a change," said Veronika Kren, as she paused from pushing her bike laden with groceries. "We have to look at naked women all the time and now I find it quite interesting to see something different and especially the reaction of the men."
The museum is making the most of the controversy. Natter says he hopes the poster will spark lively debate.
"Some people will say, 'What a shame. I want to see what's under that,'" he said about the red tape. "Others will say, 'Let's go the museum. There we can see the original.' And some will say, 'That's good. I don't want to see that in the public space.'
"It's about making people aware."
Associated Press video journalist Philipp Jenne contributed.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.
October 22, 2012
Naked Men: Power and Powerlessness through the Ages opens at the Leopold Museum
Important discoveries to be presented at Europe's premier Old Masters fair: Paris Tableau
LACMA presents The X, Y, and Z portfolios by American photographer Robert Mapplethorpe
Male nude posters plaster Vienna, draw complaints, organizers are being forced into cover-up mode
Unflinching moving image works by Steve McQueen presented at the Art Institute
Kunsthaus Zürich presents investigations into the Giacometti plasters
Judge sides with DC Comics in fight over Superman, heirs of superhero's co-creator signed away copyrights
MoMA PS1 presents a thematic exhibition investigating the nature of images in contemporary art today
Exhibition of recent paintings, prints, and tapestries by Chuck Close opens at the Pace Gallery in New York
Rowan and Erwan Bouroullec's first major solo show in the U.S. in almost ten years opens in Chicago
Royal Ontario Museum researchers publish new theory on origin of flightless birds
CAM Raleigh presents new artworks in exhibition by Puerto Rican artist Angel Otero
StolenSpace Gallery opens Shepard Fairey's second solo exhibition in London
New York based artist Juliana Cerqueria Leite opens second solo show with TJ Boulting
Florida man charged in New York dinosaur fossils case
Mid-career retrospective of the work of Irish artist Alice Maher opens at the Irish Museum of Modern Art
Chrysler Museum introduces Thai artist Pinaree Sanpitak and her interactive installation to America
The Hilton Brothers: 'Andy Dandy and other works' at galerie hiltawsky in Berlin
Constructivist sculpture exhibition opens at The Ukrainian Museum
Most Popular Last Seven Days
1.- Sotheby's to sell one of Vilhelm Hammershøi's most beguiling interiors: 'Interior, Strandgade 30'
2.- German police find Hitler's lost horse sculptures that vanished the year Berlin Wall fell
3.- New Chief Curator and Deputy Director for Art and Education appointed at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
4.- Chrysler Museum mourns passing of Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art Amy Brandt
5.- How Iraqi friar Najeeb Michaeel saved ancient Christian manuscripts from Islamic State
6.- Anish Kapoor sculpture 'Blood Mirror' surprises with surface and sound effects
7.- Sotheby's to offer the first painting to be sold from Cornelius Gurlitt's trove of art
8.- Descendants of art collector Peggy Guggenheim go head to head in a French appeals court
9.- Vandalized statues from parks, gardens and public spaces restored at Argentine 'hospital'
10.- Unique 17th century portrait by British artist Mary Beale discovered at McMaster Museum of Art
Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .
|Royalville Communications, Inc|