Frightened gallery rejects Westergaard charity painting
A Danish art auctioneer has rejected a painting by Kurt Westergaard which was to be auctioned to fund the relief effort in Haiti. Lauritz.com had called for submissions for various celebrities for their charity campaign, but Westergaard’s innocuous painting was deemed too risky, simply because it was by him.
Spokesperson Mette Jessen:
We must recognise that the terror threat is still of such a character that we can’t predict the consequences of a sale. We value the safety of our employees quite highly, which is why an eventual risk assessment was used in our consideration.
The craven decision was condemned by Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen:
‘I won’t dictate which auction house sells what and who should cut someone’s hair but I want to warn against the stigmatisation it creates.
He added that people should not live their lives “in the shadow of fear.”
Fortunately a more principled gallery has stepped in and accepted Westergaard’s watercolour. Galleri Draupner, which has previously exhibited his work, are inviting bids on their website.
The current high bid stands at $22,000.
UPDATE: (21 Jan, 12:15) Latest bid: $75,000.