Fresh Links!

by Art Fag City on July 26, 2008 · 16 comments Fresh Links!

New law proposed in response to exhibition – The Art Newspaper

“It would criminalize those who harm animals when making art.” Is this really necessary? I’d like to hear what the Art Law Blog has to say on this subject. Via: T.Whid

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

t.whid July 26, 2008 at 9:06 pm

AFC: “Is this really necessary?”
twhid: “no”

…simple answers to simple questions :-)

Reply

t.whid July 26, 2008 at 4:06 pm

AFC: “Is this really necessary?”
twhid: “no”

…simple answers to simple questions :-)

Reply

dean wermer July 26, 2008 at 10:29 pm

1. There are already laws in place in many if not most jurisdictions regarding treatment of animals;
2. This law (I did not scout out the text), I assume, is attempting to cast its net wider than the existing laws regarding treatment of animals;
3. How broadly will “suffering” be cast (e.g., in photographing that animal, it looks like it stood there a long time and is unhappy; you are a felon now)(e.g., Banksy’s painted elephant in Los Angeles), how is it to be judged, etc – i.e., some might argue that any use of animals in art is inappropriate (except perhaps photographs in their natural habitat);
4. Depending on some of the foregoing, the law possibly may infringe on 1st Amendment concerns, given the expression inherent in much art;
5. It’s hard not to believe our lawmakers have better things to do.

Reply

dean wermer July 26, 2008 at 10:29 pm

1. There are already laws in place in many if not most jurisdictions regarding treatment of animals;
2. This law (I did not scout out the text), I assume, is attempting to cast its net wider than the existing laws regarding treatment of animals;
3. How broadly will “suffering” be cast (e.g., in photographing that animal, it looks like it stood there a long time and is unhappy; you are a felon now)(e.g., Banksy’s painted elephant in Los Angeles), how is it to be judged, etc – i.e., some might argue that any use of animals in art is inappropriate (except perhaps photographs in their natural habitat);
4. Depending on some of the foregoing, the law possibly may infringe on 1st Amendment concerns, given the expression inherent in much art;
5. It’s hard not to believe our lawmakers have better things to do.

Reply

dean wermer July 26, 2008 at 5:29 pm

1. There are already laws in place in many if not most jurisdictions regarding treatment of animals;
2. This law (I did not scout out the text), I assume, is attempting to cast its net wider than the existing laws regarding treatment of animals;
3. How broadly will “suffering” be cast (e.g., in photographing that animal, it looks like it stood there a long time and is unhappy; you are a felon now)(e.g., Banksy’s painted elephant in Los Angeles), how is it to be judged, etc – i.e., some might argue that any use of animals in art is inappropriate (except perhaps photographs in their natural habitat);
4. Depending on some of the foregoing, the law possibly may infringe on 1st Amendment concerns, given the expression inherent in much art;
5. It’s hard not to believe our lawmakers have better things to do.

Reply

dean wermer July 26, 2008 at 10:40 pm

Ok, I read past the first paragraph in the linked passage. It’s worse than I thought. The impetus for the bill (which is still being drafted so we can’t really vet it at this time) was a video exhibition, apparently documenting the traditional killing of some animals in mexico as part of food production. Attempting to criminalize the artwork and its exhibition, not to mention the financial backers (rather than any mistreatment itself of the animals as part of the food production process) will run afoul of the 1st Amendment and be tossed by the courts. The rationale given by the city commissioner drafting the bill – “If you allow forums that find this type of work acceptable, more people will produce it – of course could be made against any artistic representation of something someone views as bad/harmful. Such content specific regulation of expression is vile and contrary to 1st Amendment principles and caselaw.

Reply

dean wermer July 26, 2008 at 5:40 pm

Ok, I read past the first paragraph in the linked passage. It’s worse than I thought. The impetus for the bill (which is still being drafted so we can’t really vet it at this time) was a video exhibition, apparently documenting the traditional killing of some animals in mexico as part of food production. Attempting to criminalize the artwork and its exhibition, not to mention the financial backers (rather than any mistreatment itself of the animals as part of the food production process) will run afoul of the 1st Amendment and be tossed by the courts. The rationale given by the city commissioner drafting the bill – “If you allow forums that find this type of work acceptable, more people will produce it – of course could be made against any artistic representation of something someone views as bad/harmful. Such content specific regulation of expression is vile and contrary to 1st Amendment principles and caselaw.

Reply

Susanna Bluhm July 27, 2008 at 5:12 pm

So, this seems unclear to me from what I’ve read: was the killing done FOR the purpose of the video, or was he documenting a slaughter that would have taken place regardless?

Reply

Susanna Bluhm July 27, 2008 at 5:12 pm

So, this seems unclear to me from what I’ve read: was the killing done FOR the purpose of the video, or was he documenting a slaughter that would have taken place regardless?

Reply

Susanna Bluhm July 27, 2008 at 5:12 pm

So, this seems unclear to me from what I’ve read: was the killing done FOR the purpose of the video, or was he documenting a slaughter that would have taken place regardless?

Reply

Susanna Bluhm July 27, 2008 at 12:12 pm

So, this seems unclear to me from what I’ve read: was the killing done FOR the purpose of the video, or was he documenting a slaughter that would have taken place regardless?

Reply

Rob Myers July 27, 2008 at 6:07 pm

I’ll be very surprised if animal rights legislation doesn’t cover art the same as any other field of endeavour.

Singling out art is censorship. Making art doesn’t excuse ethical implications, artists cannot cover torturing animals with bleats of “but I’m making art”. It is precisely because of this that artists’ treatment of animals should not be treated differently from any other field of human endeavour by the law.

Reply

Rob Myers July 27, 2008 at 1:07 pm

I’ll be very surprised if animal rights legislation doesn’t cover art the same as any other field of endeavour.

Singling out art is censorship. Making art doesn’t excuse ethical implications, artists cannot cover torturing animals with bleats of “but I’m making art”. It is precisely because of this that artists’ treatment of animals should not be treated differently from any other field of human endeavour by the law.

Reply

t.whid July 28, 2008 at 2:16 pm

@Rob

Of course. This is ridiculous! It would make the animal activist’s own shock posters of animal torture/abuse illegal — unless it targets artists specifically and not activism. How they try to make that distinction legal I’d love to see.

Reply

t.whid July 28, 2008 at 2:16 pm

@Rob

Of course. This is ridiculous! It would make the animal activist’s own shock posters of animal torture/abuse illegal — unless it targets artists specifically and not activism. How they try to make that distinction legal I’d love to see.

Reply

t.whid July 28, 2008 at 9:16 am

@Rob

Of course. This is ridiculous! It would make the animal activist’s own shock posters of animal torture/abuse illegal — unless it targets artists specifically and not activism. How they try to make that distinction legal I’d love to see.

Reply

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