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Philippines: Art exhibit deemed offensive censored

By Marta Cooper / 12 August, 2011

Officials at the state-run Cultural Centre of the Philippines shut an art exhibit on Tuesday after it provoked heated debate, threats and hate mail for combining Christian symbols with phallic objects. The decision by the centre’s board of directors came a day after former first lady and art patron Imelda Marcos joined politicians and Roman Catholic church leaders in denouncing the exhibit. The board said it made the decision because of “an increasing number of threats to persons and property,” including the artists and staff. It said the threats increased after critics vandalised an installation by removing a wooden penis from a poster depicting Jesus Christ.

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