Thursday, June 19, 2008

The sky is falling

Art and controversy always seem to go together but the chicken news from Australia takes it another crazy step forward. Someone saw a Mike Parr video (having first shunted out to the island where it was being shown) and was stunned to see film of a chicken, or maybe more than one, being decapitated. The police were onto it and now the R18 sign already in place is to be R18 plus a warning about the bad chicken business. Does the the person who complained not eat chicken? And if so, what were they doing at a Mike Parr installation (definitely not a place for vegetarians). Other dead animals in the Biennale include Maurizio Cattelan's hanging horse Novecentro and of course Biennale officials have been quick to announce that it died of natural causes. Now that does sound controversial. How poignant to think of Cattelan pacing backward and forward, constantly looking at his watch, waiting for his horse to finally snuff it so he can have it gutted and stuffed for his latest installation.
Image: Horse head sequence from Coppola’s The Godfather, available on DVD