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Nude woman, gone, what a shame

Gallery removes nude painting in #MeToo gesture

Lack of commonsense in those running our institutions indicates that being as thick as two bricks is a requirement The thought that a historic and important painting is removed from public gaze because a few good looking shielas are flashing their nubile breasts should rise anger in the calmest of people. Regardless of the purpose, there is no meaningful conversation can take place about the sexual harrassment of woman that bears any relevance to the removal of one of millions of such paintings. It seems that the purpose can only be to  demonstrate that the public servants involved want to be identified as progressives. Better shift them than the paintings.

The decision by the Manchester Art Gallery to temporarily remove a famous Victorian painting showing nude mythological creatures has been deemed “puritanical” and an act of “authoritarian moralising”.

Inspired by the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements against sexual assault, the gallery has removed Hylas and the Nymphs by John William Waterhouse (1849-1917) to “prompt conversation” about how artwork is displayed and interpreted.

Manchester Art Gallery blogged the directors’ rationale: “This gallery presents the female body as either a ‘passive decorative form’ or a ‘femme fatale’. Let’s challenge this Victorian fantasy!

“The gallery exists in a world full of intertwined issues of gender, race, sexuality and class which affect us all. How could artworks speak in more contemporary, relevant ways?”

Visitors are asked to share their thoughts on the bare wall space with post-its or on Twitter via the hashtag #MAGSoniaBoyce.

Curator for contemporary art Clare Gannaway told The Guardian that debates around sexual assault of women featured prominently in recent months fed into the decision. She denied that the removal was about censorship.

Gannaway criticised the name of the room the painting normally hangs in, ‘In Pursuit of Beauty’, claiming that it was comprised of male artists presenting the female body as decorative and passive.

“For me personally, there is a sense of embarrassment that we haven’t dealt with it sooner,” she told the newspaper.

However, the reaction has been broadly negative with art lovers, women, and even some feminists complaining of censorship, calling it “po-faced politically-correct virtue signalling” and “authoritarian moralising”.

Others have said it is “degrading” and “borderline offensive” to conflate art with the #MeToo debate on sex crimes against women.

“Defining this ‘an artistic act’ doesn’t disguise its authoritarian moralising as part of a rapidly spreading censorship championed by an increasingly puritanical, hectoring and intolerant feminism. It’s dangerous and a long way from the feminism I grew up with,” tweeted one woman.

Another Twitter user posted an image of the same scene, with nudes, painted by a woman – disrupting the leftist narrative by posing the question whether only nudes painted by men can objectify women.

Both paintings depict the moment before Hylas, the companion of ancient Greek mythological hero Heracles, is abducted by water nymphs.

The concept that a removal of a piece of art “for contemplation” is art itself — versus having an actual painting to contemplate — was also roundly mocked.

Other users have noted that “Puritanism is not empowering” and compared the act to both book-burning by Nazis and Islamic morality laws on women’s clothing.

Respondents to the blog worried it set a “dangerous precedent” that only art considered “acceptable” may be on display in future.

However, some, like left-liberal Fawcett Society trustee Rachel Coldicutt, applauded the move, saying that it was “Brilliant that #MAGsoniaboyce is making it clear galleries don’t have to promote compliant, eroticised images of women”.

The removal of “compliant, eroticised” women has been in the news earlier this week after Formula 1 grid girls and Professional Darts Corporation walk-on girls found out they will lose their jobs in moves inspired by prudish third-wave feminism.

Victoria Friedman

{ 16 comments… add one }
  • Muphin 13/02/2018, 6:05 am

    I seen the original of this beautiful painting. A shame PC (Me Too) has gone “Too Far”.

    Lets go a bit farther, why not dress Michael Angelo’s statue of David?
    He would look good in shorts, perhaps a mini skirt, long mens trousers, a kilt!!!!

  • Xword 13/02/2018, 6:42 am

    Either brain dead leftoids or a canny PR crew shining the spotlight on MAG.Standing room only when the re-hang the pic

  • Bh 13/02/2018, 7:52 am

    Wondering how long it will be until they start shaming the cave men for hunting and gathering for women.

    Hmm, and why haven’t they started shaming animals etc for having male hunters/gatherers?

  • Penguinite 13/02/2018, 8:00 am

    I wonder how many of the metooers read and viewed 50 Shades of gray? Be Jesus! Most movies made today contain worse sex scenes than are depicted in this painting! If all art galleries did that there’d be nothing to see?

  • Penguinite 13/02/2018, 9:05 am

    Nude woman gone! What a sham!

  • Bushkid 13/02/2018, 9:07 am

    Plonkers. Just mental midget plonkers wallowing in first world confected “problems”.

    Besides, the painting portrays a bloke about to be abducted by a bunch of sheilas, not some poor sheila about to be abducted or ravished by a bunch of blokes. Looks to me like everyone’s about to have a pretty good time, actually. As a sheila myself, I can find nothing “offensive” about it. Sheesh!

    And it looks to have been very well painted, which I thought was one of the major points of painting and the appreciation of art.

  • Lorraine 13/02/2018, 9:11 am

    is the Mona Lisa acceptable , many Artists love the nude , and many Artists did nude paintings and drawings , all those in private ownership has just dropped millions of Dollars as they are worthless now the PC police of the METOO movement have deemed them all amoral

    • Joe Blogs 13/02/2018, 9:26 am


  • Zoltan 13/02/2018, 9:25 am

    Then there’s this bloke……

    • Joe Blogs 13/02/2018, 9:35 am

      It’s Barnaby.

  • Ironback 13/02/2018, 12:04 pm

    Is this another step in the Forced conversion to Islam? Little steps at a time. Next will be banning the bikini, ending with the compulsory wearing of the hijab by all women. The original liberationists who campaigned for the right to vote etc, would be bewildered with their modern sisters surrendering freedoms, that they worked so hard to achieve.

  • Graham 13/02/2018, 12:28 pm

    Given the crap that comes out of Hollywood, what you can find on the internet, any tabloid newspaper where Sheila’s compete to undress as much as possible it’s passing strange that you can get worked up over a painting.

  • Ex ADF 13/02/2018, 1:08 pm

    I have considered it somewhat odd that we mere males are condemned for looking at female attributes, yet females compete to see who can expose as much breast as possible before the nipple peeks out, or split their dresses to expose their backsides and upper legs! Are they doing this for other women, or can it be they may be secretly yearning for male approval?

  • Clarion Call 13/02/2018, 1:23 pm

    Cease with the hyperventilating, folks. Understand what’s going on here…this is just another chapter of the leftists’ handbook on the ceaseless attack on western values as a precursor to an Islamic dominated ‘new world’ order. All the brainwashed idiots are purposefully carrying out their designated tasks as per instructions . The sheeple (that’d be us) will sit back, moan a bit, but do SFA. When they finally grasp that it’s time to react, it’ll be far too late…the trap door has firmly shut on any dissent. Glad I won’t be around to witness the carnage to come.

    • Neville 14/02/2018, 1:59 am


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