Thursday, 22 May 2008


I am completely outraged, sickened even at the censorship of the work of Bill Henson.  He is nothing short of a genius.  Yes his artwork does feature adolescents but so has artwork for hundreds of years, including work done by Leonardo da Vinci  and the record cover by Blind Faith.  Art simply captures the current state of the world whether it be through a lens or onto canvas.  Rather than censoring the artworks we should be viewing them and gaining a deeper understanding of the current state of society.  So I am compelled to believe that there is a deeper meaning to his works, and that it is to the detriment of society to attempt to coverup the reality that is pedophilia.  He is merely the messenger of reality, not the creator of such social justice issues.  

Henson has been creating the same type photographs since the early 90's and it hasn't been until this current exhibition by Roslyn Oxley9 that moral outrage has ever occurred.  The outrage is coming from those who haven't even looked at the works in context (if at all), such as our current Prime Minister Kevin Rudd who proclaims the works "revolting".  As with previous art movements, and even magazines such as playboy there was moral outrage, and in many ways art has helped shape the paradigms of society as a whole. 

Rather than resisting this process, I want to be a part of it, as the feminist movement did in the 60s and 70s.  Too much is being censored, rationalized and regulated, and we are not reeking the benefits in any way.  It is time for a new artistic movement to change the world for the better, and I'll be damned if I'm not a part of it.  

1 comment:

Russell Blackford said...

Well said - but the voices of reason seem to be losing this battle at the moment. I can't believe how much puritanism, prudery, and moral panic Australia can muster over an issue like this. It's quite a shock being brought back to it.