Gallery worried about Spear rating

2012-06-01 22:41

Johannesburg - The Goodman Gallery will consult its lawyers on the classification of Brett Murray's painting The Spear on Friday, spokesperson Lara Koseff said.

"We felt it would have a significant impact on freedom of artistic expression. We are incredibly disappointed."

Koseff said the gallery would decide on its next step after studying the decision by the Films and Publications Board (FPB).

It announced earlier that it had decided to give the painting a 16N rating, meaning children under the age of 16 should not have access to the artwork because it displays nudity.

The painting, which was vandalised at the Goodman Gallery on Tuesday last week, depicts President Jacob Zuma with exposed genitals.

The City Press newspaper said its legal team was also studying the ruling.

It published a photograph of the painting on its website, but removed the image on Monday after an outcry and amid calls for a boycott.

"We are concerned about its implications for newspapers and particularly online media," deputy editor Fikile Moyo said.

He hoped the newspaper would have more information on the implications towards the end of the weekend so it could better comment.

FPB CEO Yoliswa Makhasi said the board understood that the image of the painting had gone viral, but urged youths under the age of 16 to delete copies of it.

"We don't seek to punish people in our day-to-day work," she said.

The board said it would not report people to the police, but would work with service providers to limit access to the image.

When asked how this image differed from other nude artworks, FPB chief operations officer Mmapula Fisha said Murray's painting was not just a piece of nude art.

"The artwork has forced [our] society to revisit its painful history."

The classification had to balance this and artistic merit.

Fisha said if any of the affected parties was dissatisfied with the decision they could appeal to the FPB's appeal tribunal within 30 days.

  • gemmaleigh.evans.3 - 2012-06-01 22:58

    16? So should we start banning all depictions of nudity in art? Better yet's about you start grading nudity in biology textbooks which are accessible to children in Primary School. Furthermore, what gives FPB any right to grade anything based on the public reaction to it instead of the content of the material itself. Or are the five selected to classify the painting not qualified enough to make such a decision on their own?

      Rodney - 2012-06-02 02:32

      Pretty sure i read in the news a little while back that the FPB has no jurisdiction over paintings. I guess the ANC changed that law to suit themselves. What's the bet that violent movies showing graphic scenes, nudity, drug taking etc. aren't rated 16N. The bull being spouted about bringing back painful history is exactly that, bull!

      EricksonTL - 2012-06-02 03:12

      How many teenage mothers do we have again? You telling me none of those girls have seen 'naughty bits?' Eish. Double standards.

      ratsaka.eugene - 2012-06-02 08:01

      I can put my head on the block and say, all of you have not looked at the art detail itself, you looked at the tottie only, the size, the shape. Admit it! Screw art if it's pornographic. We are trying to raise our children, to become men and women of God, not whores and Nazis.

      Polotic - 2012-06-02 11:12

      They were pandering to the will of their political masters. The "..painful history" has nothing to do with the merits of the art piece and is a spurious reason for restricting it. I am sure that if they had carried out their full instructions from on high, they would have banned it outright. But that would have been to obvious.

      Patsy - 2012-06-03 11:00

      Utter CRAP!!!

  • Sheik - 2012-06-01 23:17

    This country is becoming the laughing stock of the world. Next thing kids will be told not to look down while relieving themselves because they'll see a penis. Non of this would have happened if JZ had a spine as well. He is not bright enough to see "Spine" and "Penis" use the same letters.( I won't use big words to explain for those in the ANC )

  • Nicolaas - 2012-06-01 23:46

    Hi Lara do not worry, just put up 17 pics. let everybody walk past the 16 to have have a look at painting no 17. That will confuse the hell out of the FPB and the ALL NATIONAL CRIMINAL PARTY.

      Alice Fullard - 2012-06-02 08:37


      Alice Fullard - 2012-06-02 08:37


      Alice Fullard - 2012-06-02 08:38


  • Ditoa-re - 2012-06-01 23:57

    The following programme is containing SNLV 16 , (mshini wam mshini wam)

  • Adrian - 2012-06-02 00:22

    It is hard to think that adults can be so damned stupid. Lets get this straight, no person under 16 is supposed to see art showing a how in the hell do they think libraries and the internet are going to enforce that. I think that we should all make art of ourselves with our tottoes hanging out and publish it as far and wide as we can. I want to see them ban 1 million works of 'tottie art' This government has now gone right over the edge into the domain of little children whinging in a cresche. BTW: it may come as a total surprise to the ANC that all men, black and white have totties, yes, its true, if they don't believe it then I am more than willing to send them a painting of me with my white dangling tottie...I could even ask my black buddy to do a duet, we will call it 'Amma Ebony & Ivory Schlongs'

      Rodney - 2012-06-02 02:51

      one can only imagine what the ANC would make of this.

  • Juan - 2012-06-02 01:25

    The painting has been spoiled. What nudity is to be seen now?? The FPB and the ANC are really making a laughing stock of themselves.

  • Nicorien Le Roux - 2012-06-02 03:02

    Do you remember the censorship we had during apartheid? Are we going back to the dark ages know?

      Llewellyn Kriel - 2012-06-02 07:51

      We should be grateful this asinine foolishness has shown the whole world just how many centuries backward the anachronistic mentality of the ANC and its mymidon multitude of supporters have dragged us. Their true feudal nature -think medieval Europe and Roman empire - with great advances in roads, weaponry, mathematics, but still worshipped kings & emperors as omnipotent, omniscient gods. SA is an ancient mind in a "young" body.

      Jan - 2012-06-02 10:21

      Nicorien - IF someone at your office painted a nude portrait of you and put it up at the entrance to your office would you keep quite or would you approach the courts to condemn it? I dont think you would be crying censorship then? Im not an ANC supporter but that painting did go too far in insulting the dignity of mnr zuma. We cannot pick and choose whose dignity we want protected and keep quite when the dignity of people who dislike is attacked.Thats not democracy in my view.

      Patsy - 2012-06-03 11:15

      Yeah, Nicorien. Everybody will have to produce ID books as proof of age before entering any art galleries in S. A. What a joke - a BAD one!

  • Nico - 2012-06-02 06:26

    They ( 16yr olds) can have sex and have babies... but NO they can't see paintings? WTF next. Maybe more dole money.

      Adrian - 2012-06-02 06:47

      Asif children don't know that JZ used that spear to make 23 children....Contrary to what the ANC will have us believe, children are small, not stupid.

      Jan - 2012-06-02 10:22

      So rhino just because a minority of 16 yr olds are having babies does that mean we should allow ALL 16 yrs olds to legally be able to view porn and visit strip clubs?

      Polotic - 2012-06-02 11:28

      @Jan - there is a difference between art and porn. And nobody is advocating that 16 year olds visit strip clubs. This is a debate about artistic expression.

      Nico - 2012-06-05 17:59

      What has strip clubs to do with this???? Jan, get some education.

  • Gerald Jordaan - 2012-06-02 06:38

    Wat 'n klomp NARRE !!!

  • Kgaditsi - 2012-06-02 07:09

    I guess painting private parts its artistic expression for people who are sick.

      jannie.debeer - 2012-06-02 07:56

      Michealangelo, Picasso, van Gogh, etc. all sick, sick people. Wake up and think before you post the bull in your head.

      chrismalcolm - 2012-06-02 08:00

      Artistic expression is having the freedom to express ideas. Almost every great artist has painted nudes. In this case it may be different in that it has a confrontational context, but the the artist should be no less entitled of his expression. Like it or not. Children likewise should not be denied access to art, nor should they be closeted by an institution only concerned with self interest.

      Jan - 2012-06-02 10:23

      jannie.debeer I guess what Kgaditsi meant to say was artists who paint the nude parts of people WHO DO NOT want their nude parts to be painted are sick.

  • fatphuq - 2012-06-02 07:39

    By law, all politicians should have their genitals exposed, whenever in public. Especially in front of children, so that there is no misunderstanding of the person they are looking at.

  • johann.greffrath - 2012-06-02 07:40

    "The artwork has forced [our] society to revisit its painful history." ...What? ...Oh you mean the part where government becomes delirious with power, yeah THAT makes sense!

      Jan - 2012-06-02 10:25

      Johann if the apartheid government did not damage black education I very much doubt this country would have such a pathetic government. You cant expect overnight perfection. Majority of black people are uneducated and supressed first by the apartheid government and now by their own government.

      Jan - 2012-06-02 18:31

      Michael - How many black friends do you have? How many black people do you genuinely care about? Your argument that black people didnt have an education when riiebeeck landed here does NOT justify the fact that the apartheid government DELIBERATELY denied raising of education standards for blacks. Are you saying Indian and coloured people came here HIGHLY EDUCATED? Mate you are the distorter of facts. Look in the mirror.

      abram.spamers - 2012-06-28 13:38

      @Michael - That is pretty much the most intelligent reply I have ever read on any news site ever. Well done! I've been trying to put those things you just said into words for years.

  • jmareletse - 2012-06-02 07:42

    I wonder if FPB ws threatened as well,,,bcos ANC is a bully

  • Enlightened - 2012-06-02 08:26

    The new culture and arts south afica!!!let's also ban sculptures y Michael Angelo and Leonardo de Vinci, shaal we?

  • Theresa - 2012-06-02 09:33

    When is someone going to say something about Ayanda Mabulu's artwork?? Jacob Zuma with his much maligned penis held up by a crutch and a nude Desmond Tutu. One has to ask why this is being ignored, is it perhaps because the artist is a black man? Of course, black people could not possibly be hypocrites or racists can they?

      Theo - 2012-06-02 10:48

      "The artwork has forced [our] society to revisit its painful history." You see if its done by black artists then its not "visiting the painful history" , then suddenly it becomes art. Such a pathetic, useless, corrupt, un-educated bunch of morons.

      atholl.hay - 2012-06-02 13:38

      And the silence from the National Arts Council is deafening - I seriously feel the urge to break something!! Aaaaaarrggghhh!!

  • Tony - 2012-06-02 12:10

    Let it be now!

  • Zoe - 2012-06-02 12:47

    HAHAHA well sorry for them but atthe end of the day that leaves anyone 2 years to educate their children on this fantastic piece of art before those kids have the right two vote. thats more then enough time to convince someone of the pathetic leaders that are ruling us at the moment.. Come on people is this seriously the biggest story out there. This joke of a president deserves this (he brought it on himself with all his pervert take a shower rape a woman ways). Much bigger stories out there so lets move on shall we?

  • Jolien Richter Labuschagne - 2012-06-02 13:16

    I'm so sick of this story. Really old news.

  • Andre - 2012-06-02 14:27

    who legalised porn in this country

  • Jeremy - 2012-06-02 16:18

    HA HA HA HA HA HA! HAve you ever heard of the Streisand effect? If this is how dumb the best of the SA spin doctors is then I propose we take over the country ourselves, it shouldn't be difficult. We can just direct the ANC leadership into a giant farm mill, telling them there's a very important meeting about government tenders being held, apparently nepotistic and kickbacked appointments are to be made legal as well as socially acceptable!

  • Enlightened - 2012-06-02 17:28

    This is ridiculous. The other night I saw two gays kissing on e-tv I forget the context, it only lasted a few seconds but caught my eye. I do forget the context. Whilst I'm in no way anti gay, I certainly think that a 15 year old would find that image far more "intriguing" than Zuma exposing what even creatures of lesser intelligence in this country have been made aware that he has. I quite frankly think it is time, we as a nation grow up and start getting our priorities right

  • mark.oppenheimer1 - 2012-06-03 18:00

    Come join the struggle and submit your rendition of Zuma's penis.

  • louis.v.vuuren - 2012-06-06 10:35

    EF this stupid painting! there are more serious issues in this country - more blacks are killing whites weekly and nothing is done

  • keith.f.murphy - 2012-06-28 13:12

    This FPB just say things without thinking !! another idiot

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