A Berlin gallery was forced to close an exhibition satirical works because six Muslim youths threatened violence unless one of the posters was taken down.
The exhibition, by the Danish art group Surrend, was called “Zionist Occupied Government”. It contained 21 posters ridiculing neo-Nazis, the state of Israel, and radical Jews. But there was also one which showed the Kaaba (a large black cube in Mecca with a meteorite embedded in one corner, which Muslims point the tops of their heads towards when they pray) and gave a “bitingly satirical commentary against radicalism”.
The six youths insisted this one be removed, and threatened to throw stones if it was not.
Fortunately the gallery is not rolling over in the face of this superstition-motivated thuggery, and the closure is only temporary. The gallery’s artistic director Ralf Hartmann told Reuters he was working with the authorities to improve security before reopening the exhibition:
It would be unacceptable if individual social groups were in a position to exercise censorship over art and the freedom of expression.
Indeed it would.
UPDATE: (3rd March) The poster in question was called “Dummer Stein” (Stupid Stone). It was displayed next the poster of a Jewish man which bore the caption “Stupid Hat”. We finally tracked an image down to Snaphanen. So now it’s time to wheel out the naughty step:
And another, digitally enhanced version: