Controversial Artists

Controversial Artists

  • Submitted By: lowthy
  • Date Submitted: 04/21/2010 7:55 AM
  • Category: Social Issues
  • Words: 2255
  • Page: 10
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Extended Writing Task 2 Year 12 Tom Lowth

Option Two: Realisation of Conflict

Actively voicing an opinion on social issues has leaded many artists into temporary or permanent exile or devastating loss of popularity. Select three artworks from three different artists that have led to controversy for the artist. Expound upon the reasons leading to the outrage surrounding the work and evaluate the effect their showing may have had on the art world at the time.

“No great artist ever sees things as they really are. If he did he would cease to be an artist.” Oscar Wilde.

Throughout our lifetime we continue to learn the expectations and limitations of our persona. We are taught to never exceed the boundaries of what is acceptable in society and are educated to follow the barriers that distinguish right from wrong.

“I just wanted to find out where the boundaries were. I've found out there aren't any. I wanted to be stopped but no one will stop me” Damien Hirst.

There is a direct connection between the acceptance of controversial art within society and the artist’s production of it. David Cerny, Priscilla Bracks and Lars Vilks have all constructed controversial art work expressing their opinions on some of the world’s most important personalities and have resulted in public disputes about the offensive nature of their work. Cerny’s work Shark, is a model of Saddam Hussein preserved in a tank of formaldehyde.

It was banned for its realistic nature which might have “shocked people” including “Muslims”(David Cerny Information Link).

Bracks work Jesus-Osama is a clever representation depicting Osama bin Laden morphing into Jesus, this caused great controversy amongst Christians. Vilks newspaper cartoon illustrating Islamic Prophet Muhammad as a roundabout dog erupted in great controversy leading to violence and protests. Each artist has generated controversy with their contemporary ideas and opinions and all relate to topics in...

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