Visceral Violations

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Date: 1995

Region: North America

Subject: Nudity

Medium: Photography


Artist: Melinda Montgomery

Confronting Bodies: Acme Art Company board members

Date of Action: 1995

Location: Columbus, Ohio, USA

Description of Artwork: Visceral Violations is a 14 piece digital photography series dealing with issues of power, gender and violence. Some of the photographs include erect penises; one photo shows the image of a naked boy superimposed over the face of a girl.

The Incident: Visceral Violations was installed in the Acme Art Company, an alternative, non-profit gallery that supports emerging artists, for a scheduled exhibit. When gallery board member, Cassie Rogers, viewed the photos she ordered the gallery director, Margarette Evans, to cover the windows. Rogers feared that some of the pieces may be considered child pornography and violate city obscenity laws. The board voted to remove four of Montgomery's works.

Results of Incident: Rogers was unable to reach Montgomery before removing the works. The works were removed and the gallery changed its exhibit selection process.

Source: Artistic Freedom Under Attack, 1996