States of Grace

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Graham Ovenden.jpg

Artist: Graham Ovenden

Year: 2013

Date of Action: February 2020

Region: Europe

Location: Great Britain

Subject: Nudity, Youth


Confronting Bodies: Truro Crown Court and The Tate

Description of Artwork: States of Grace depicts nude and semi-nude photographic portraits of young girls.

The Incident: Graham Ovenden's art has been investigated as possible child pornography by US and UK authorities on a number of occasions but has received continued support from leading figures in the art world throughout the investigations.

In April 2013, Ovenden was found guilty of six charges of indecency with a child and one charge of indecent assault against a child. Following his conviction, the Tate gallery removed images of his work from its online gallery, and also removed access to his work in its galleries.

Results of Incident: While some of the figures who have supported Ovenden continue to affirm the legitimacy of his art, the Tate has not reversed its action.