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Saturday, August 31, 2013

Ministry withdraws endorsement of M50 show

Tourism and Culture Minister Nazri Abdul Aziz said he had withdrawn the endorsement given by the National Visual Art Gallery (BSVN) for the M50 Malaysia Day exhibition because the artwork ‘I is for Idiot’, which is being probed by the police, is deemed "offensive".

NONE"Every exhibition must go through a committee in the BSVN, which is under my ministry," he said.

"On the issue of the (‘I is for Idiot’) artwork, it was not shown to the committee, so when it was displayed at the exhibition, that means the person responsible is not being honest," he added.

"And when the artwork was exhibited, we found it offensive. So we have ordered it (installation) to be withdrawn," he told reporters after attending the 50th anniversary of the National Museum today.
US invasion of Iraq
Police are investigating the artwork under Section 298 of the Penal Code which deals with religious insults, following a police report on Aug 28 by Islamic NGO, Muafakat. 

NONEMuafakat said the art work is offensive as it allegedly depicts Islam and Muslims as idiots, and had reversed the Quranic verse.
The work was part of the M50 Selamat Hari Malaysia exhibition at Publika Mall. 

The exhibition runs from Aug 27 to Sept 17, and is co-organised by MapKL@Publika, Balai Seni Visual Negara and the Tourism and Culture Ministry.
Artist Anurendra Jegadeva hasexplained that 'I for Idiot' refers to the US invasion of Iraq under then president George W Bush.

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