Art Show Controversy

Allie Gibson, Author

On Tuesday May 8th, the annual K-12 art showcase took place in the media center of Fraser High School. But in an unfortunate turn of events, 4 pieces were removed from the show because of “questionable imagery”, one of those pieces being mine. In each image, there were areas of legs, shoulders and abdomens that were visible, all of which nothing explicit was exposed in any way. Administration took these precautions as to taking these pieces down only minutes before the show rather than days before. Guests viewing the show were confused as to why there were empty spots in display areas and I was confused as to why a piece from my senior table was missing.

As I reported the issue to my art teachers, they mentioned that there is a specific guideline to follow regarding risqué images in the art show. But their confusion was that my piece was the only one out of the chosen four that met the guidelines. Not only that, but there were other controversial pieces that were displayed that didn’t get taken down. In retaliation to this issue, I emailed my superintendent and expressed how I felt.

She replied within a matter of moments and wished to discuss the issue with me in person. I agreed to meet with her as well as with the assistant principals and discussed the controversy. We came to an agreement that what happened was wrong of the department and apologized, she then helped to come up with a solution to keep this from happening in future art shows by maybe having a separate art show for the younger grade levels than with the high school level.

We came up with viable solutions in order to keep the art show running smoothly and more efficiently in future shows. We also encourage all artists to express their way of art in whichever way they wish. Because one thing that some people may not understand is this: art cannot be censored, only expressed.


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