Sunday, February 2, 2014

Weekly Article Reviewed by Alexa Wirth

Article Review:

Title: Controversial art finds home
Author: Randi Bjornstad
Source: The Register-Guard

Recently, censorship has become more and more prominent in the art community. But at what point to we draw the line between censoring content and restricting artists from sharing their thoughts and feelings? In this case of Linda Cunningham's piece, School Days, a few of a gallery's board members decided that her piece “didn’t fit”. The author of this article provided insight from both Linda and the board which supported the idea that her piece should have been allowed to be shown. The only generalization made about the piece was from the artist herself when she claimed that it was a response to her “feelings about [the shooting at]Sandy Hook and all the little children and teachers who were killed there”. It was also stated in the article, each of the censoring guidelines that the board uses to determine if a piece can be shown in the gallery and it was clear that School Days didn’t relate to any of the topics. With that being said, I 100% agree with the author and I feel that art will loose it’s integrity if it continues to be so harshly censored. Not to say that some things shouldn’t be censored. I just think it’s important for people to remember to be fair especially when it relates to art which is meant to be an outlet for artists to share their feelings with the world.

Overall, I think this article was easy to understand and analyze. The author did a good job of keeping his own opinions out and using an array of quotes and facts to support the topic at hand. This article relates to our course very much so because censorship is becoming a pressing issue that could greatly impact the Field of Art History. Like I stated in the previous paragraph, too much censorship could be damaging to the art community.What would we be left with then?


  1. I agree with Cakes. I think that it was a bad decision that this art piece was not put into the show. Out of the 20 board members only 3 voted on the decision of not putting the piece into the show. This piece has a lot of thought that goes into it. It has the childrens story book characters in it from the books I read when I was a kid. I like how she uses that. She also made up a little story line on the side that explains the piece in very dramatic detail while using very few words as possible. I mean while I was reading the phrase I was picturing what the scene might have looked on that day at Sandy Hook. It's a very serious piece that make the viewer think deeply. If I had children I'd go and hug and kiss them and tell them I love them right now after looking and reading about this piece. Makes me think about family. So I think the artist did a great job. I'm not sure what the board members were thinking when they decided not to let this piece into the show. In the end I'm sure this piece of art never would have been brought up in or class if it would have made it into the show...

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  3. I am very happy that Linda Cunningham's assemblage titled "School Days" is being displayed in the New Zone Gallery in downtown Eugene, Oregon. It seems that the censorship board in the New Zone Gallery is not as afraid of controversy as they are at the Emerald Art Center in downtown Springfield, Oregon. If I were a dues paying member at the Emerald Art Center, I would also drop out of a gallery that would not display a work of art just because there is controversal matter involved. I believe that art should make the viewer THINK and that a little controversy aids in that process. I also agree with the author of the article "Controversal Art Finds Home", Randi Bjornstad in The Register-Guard and with Alexa that "art will lose its integrity if it continues to be so harshly censored".

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  5. On one hand, I agree with Alexa on the idea of over censorship threatening the art community, because as Cunningham had done with School Days, it illustrates her personal reflection and expression on the Sandy Hook shooting. The fact that only three of the twenty board members had voted on the decision of if it should be shown in the gallery or not is outrageous. On the other hand though, Over-censorship in the art community is in my opinion a good thing, as Jud Turner had said: “That’s one fascinating thing about attempting censorship — it often backfires.” If it had not been for the Emerald Art Center's decision not to show Cunningham's piece, she would not be getting nearly as much attention.