Porno Viennese

December 30, 2005 // Tagged in: art, austria, courbet, History, hypocrisy, politics, Random_Wisdom, scandal

Well, Austria’s made international headlines again. In the course of a government sponsored art project which lasted all year, posters were put up all over Vienna depicting the lower torso of a woman, wearing nothing but panties displaying the logo of the EU. Adding to this lewd image fit to send each and every law-abiding, righteous Austrian into a screaming seizure of indignation, another poster was put up which depicted three people wearing the masks of The Queen, Bush and Chirac engaging in what seems to be a sexual act.

Today these posters were pulled from the streets. There is of course all sorts of screaming and finger pointing going on as well. The opposition and various officials of the Catholic church (who know their way around pornography scandals) want to see blood and a few heads rolling; the most prominent right-wing newspaper is in a constant state of hysteria over public funding for “so-called art” and everyone’s screaming murder anyways.

I won’t add much more to this self-explanatory development, but I’d like to point you to the Wikipedia entry of “L’Origine du monde”, a painting by 19th century artist Gustave Courbet, which served as the original for the EU logo poster. Now, considering that Austria’s billboards are covered by almost nude and sometimes even nude models trying to sell you everything from shower-gel to yogurt, I think the artist couldn’t have proved her point much better than by having the posters taken down. History’s repeating itself, and hypocrisy uncovered is still as much fun today as I’m sure it was back in the 19th century.