El Mundo, August 1, 2001
BARCELONA / Photo
Various Images in the exposition Trans Sexual Express have been censored
by Silvia Taules
translated by Marilyn Fontenrose
Not a single sign remains saying that inside the Centre d’Art Santa Mónica they are exhibiting the show Trans Sexual Express. A photograph of Tracey Emin, which was hung on the exterior wall of the museum for over a month, along with a large sign announcing the exposition, have been replaced with nothing.
The curators of the exposition, Xabier Arakistain and Rosa Martínez yesterday denounced the department of Culture of the Generalitat, saying they "had censored" the show by taking down the Tracey Emin photo which was displayed on the lateral facade of the building, as well as the sign announcing the show, and some of Chris Korda's photographs which are inside in the exhibition space. However, these last photos were returned to their original place late yesterday.
In any case, Arakistain and Martínez warned that if the show doesn't go back to its original form, "it will be closed due to censorship."
Regarding this situation, official sources in the Culture of the Generalitat assured us, "for now, we will not be rehanging the exterior pieces." As for the pieces on the interior, they pointed out, "We didn't take them down, it's the video that isn't functioning." And they transferred the responsibility for what has happened to the Municipal Government/Town Hall of Barcelona: "The municipal authorities communicated to us that the museum didn't go through the proper channels which is why the museum decided to take down the works." A decision that sources at the Centre d’Art Santa Mónica yesterday attributed to "we are receiving many letters of complaint regarding the photographs which were exhibited on the street, they were too bold."
According to the department of Culture, they recognized that "this time they went a little further than usual, the photo [of Tracey Emin] was more than ostentatious." Nevertheless, the museum denied that the decision had anything to do with the subject matter. "We can't disobey the municipal authorities, that would be a greater offense," they added.
On behalf of the Town Hall, a spokesperson denied that their letter was an order to take the works down: "This was only a warning that the proper permits weren't obtained, we don't have the capacity to sanction [the museum]."