Kyrgyzstan censors women’s rights art event for nudity


The government of Kyrgyzstan has censored an art exhibit devoted to women’s rights which featured a woman undressing in front of an audience.  The ensuing outrage forced the head of the gallery to resign after receiving death threats.

The government removed several exhibits deemed provocative from the exhibition which included a performance in which Danish artist Julie Savery disrobed. It also featured a female torso-shaped punching-bag wearing lingerie.

The former Soviet republic’s Ministry of Culture, Information and Tourism said it “objects to a fashion show by nude women in a temple of art and does not support such provocative gestures by contemporary artists”.

Mira Djangaracheva said she resigned as director of the national arts museum on Monday after receiving death threats from supporters of right-wing nationalist movements who saw the exhibition as offensive to traditional Kyrgyz values.

They threatened “to tear me apart, to rape me”, said Djangaracheva, a former deputy prime minister of the predominantly Muslim Central Asian nation, adding that she had asked police to investigate the threats.

“This is a bad sign … Radicals want to run the museum, the ministry, the state policy on culture.” (Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation)