That's what happened at Humboldt State University, home to the largest undergraduate botany program in the country. The sculpture was placed in the greenhouse as part of a campus-wide sculpture walk designed to display student art at 60 different locations around campus. It's up to the campus building coordinators to decide whether the art submitted to their building is appropriate. In this case, the greenhouse manager himself thought that, being a college campus, art should be seen and discussed, but no, it had to go.
Here's a smart and well-reasoned discussion of the issue from journalism professor and columnist Marcy Burstiner. She thinks that student art needs to be exhibited, failing any concerns about safety, space limitations, logistics, etc. As it is, this piece has been moved to the university gallery so that it can, in fact, be seen.
I have to say–I find this piece to be not in the least bit shocking. Like, not at all. We've got a torso, we've got a big vine, we have an obvious statement of some sort about plants and sex–so what? A greenhouse is lurid enough already; this hardly tarts it up more than the orchids and pitcher plants already do.
Your thoughts?Posted by Amy Stewart on May 11, 2011 at 5:21 am, in the category But is it Art?.