Sensational art

Shocked in Brooklyn

The exhibit at the Brooklyn Art Museum that has caused a furor in New York and generated reams of material for editorial pages is titled "Sensation." That title offers a good clue about the commercial interests behind the show. The museum was hoping to earn a media stir with the exhibit, which includes animal parts preserved in formaldehyde, images of penises alongside schoolgirl faces, and a collage of the Virgin Mary decorated with elephant dung and clippings from porn magazines. When New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani denounced the exhibit as "sick stuff" he was—besides venting his sentiments and positioning himself in next year's Senate race—providing the museum with just the publicity it was seeking.


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