Artist kills the Pope, the Queen and George Bush… in his imagination

0 Posted by - September 27, 2010 - Blog, Visual art

Gil Vincente - Ahmadinejad

Brazilian artist Gil Vicente‘s work at this year’s Sao Paulo Art Biennial has incensed critics and lawyers alike, prompting yet another debate on whether controversial artwork should be censored.

Vicente’s charcoal drawings depict the artist assassinating a variety of world leaders, including former US President George Bush, former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, Pope Benedict XVI, the Queen of England, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

The works were created to highlight the crimes committed by these global leaders by imagining that they were held accountable through acts of vengeance.

“Because they kill so many other people, it would be a favour to kill them, understand? Why don’t people in power and in the elite die?” Vicente explained to the media.

The Brazilian bar association demanded that the exhibition be removed, arguing that the works promote violence. Fortunately the Sao Paulo Art Biennial has refused to censor the work, explaining their position in a statement: “A fundamental quality of our institution is curatorial independence and freedom of expression. The works exhibited to do not reflect the opinion of the curators nor of the Biennial Foundation.”

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