Animal Art, Brutality in San Francisco

**Update** 3.31.08
The exhibition has been canceled due to threats. It is still not clear whether ADEL killed the animals himself, or documented their slaughter at the hands of Farm Workers (who typically use sledgehammers ??). If anyone can provide the information to sort out any confusion, it would be appreciated. Was this documentation or was it staged specifically for exhibition? The answer could draw a significant line between useful discourse to help animals and expose a cruel practice, and an artist who bludgeoned animals for himself for shock-value.
I am receiving many angry emails. I want to clarify – documenting animal cruelty is one of the most powerful tools animal advocates have. Look at the Hallmark beef recall case. It’s not that animal advocates can’t handle seeing these images – quite the contrary – it’s because of these images many of us have become animal advocates in the first place.  The problem is that the context of these brutalities is out of sight and the gallery has not provided information or clarity regarding what happened here – which surely would be expected had these animals been dogs, cats, or people. Of course there is outrage when the public is allowed to assume that ‘someone has bludgeoned Bambi for an art exhibit’.
https://i0.wp.com/www.nonstarvingartists.com/News/news-images/2_1.jpg
It has been brought to my attention that an Algerian artist by the name of ADEL ABDESSEMED will be having an exhibition called “Don’t Trust Me” at the San Francisco Art Institute (see below for details), that documents his killing, via sledgehammer, of six animals — a sheep, a horse, an ox, a pig, a goat, and a doe. Worst of all, it was partly paid for by tax money (Grants for the Arts/San Francisco Hotel Tax Fund). http://www.waltermcbean.com/current.shtml



As it stands, the exhibition is ‘suspended’ (http://www.sfai.edu/page.aspx?page=285&navID=587&sectionID=4) due to public outcry. We need to make sure it is cancelled all-together and additionally send a message so shock-artists like ADEL ABDESSEMED know that they are not welcome to exhibit so irresponsibly.

Abdessemed is an artist sensitive to racism, fascism, political corruption, and similar ideas, yet he fails to recognize the individual animal’s intrinsic value, and will to live – or he does and perverts it for the sake of his video. The latter would be considered sociopathic.

Controversy has always been a shock-artists best friend. One major concern in addressing this issue is that, like Damien Hirst and other artists who brutalize, mutilate, and kill animals in the name of Art, they do so because they know it will get a huge controversial response from press and people like us. Because it is impossible to define what art is, it becomes difficult to deconstruct and criticize the artist without bringing attention and thus money/power/influence to them and the institution that is featuring this brutality. On the website, they are practically asking for this response “Do these incidents represent slaughter or sacrifice? What are their social, cultural, moral, and political implications?” as if brutality towards animals has been undocumented thus far.

There are three major avenues to pursue this: Confront the Institute, confront the artist, subvert and reclaim the art (take and use it’s imagery to bring attention to the plight of the animals and the unethical pursuit of notoriety by the artist by reformatting the art in a way that calls attention to animal cruelty).

I suggest writing letters to the SFAI, the artist, and collaborating parties. Here is one example:

To Whom It May Concern,

I was shocked and saddened to learn that ADEL ABDESSEMED has murdered six animals with a sledge hammer – documented it, and is using the institutions of art to promote his ‘work’. Thank you for suspending the show – I urge you to cancel it all-together.

If you believe that ADEL ABDESSEMED is bringing something to light in his shock-art video, “Don’t Trust Me”, you should take his advice. Raising moral, ethical, and socio-political questions concerning brutality towards animals is not something that requires gallery culture to ignite public discussion. Nor do we need an artist to document himself taking the lives of animals in order to discuss issues of any ethical nature.

On the contrary, his work is invalid and spurious; hundreds of organizations globally document acts of unimaginable brutality towards animals every single day and take action to stop it – and not only do they raise these same questions in a much larger arena, but the documentation is not staged for the sake of shocking an audience – it is the true perilous documentation of a systemic ruthlessness that happens again and again every single day.

Can you image what would be said of an artist that beats a woman to supposedly call attention to sexism – or an artist that brutalizes a child to call attention to the socio-political issues surrounding child abuse? I don’t need to continue the comparisons which go on and on.

I can only believe that ADEL ABDESSEMED is a shock-artist whose hunger for attention has led him to committing heinous acts under the guise of philosophical inquiry. Had he done his research, he would have realized that his quest for exploring animal brutality has already been well underway by countless individuals, organizations, and institutions for almost a century – and these superfluous murders prove nothing more than his lack of research and empathy.

I urge you to publicly discuss the invalidity of this exhibition, and pull any funding for unethical artists like ABDESSEMED.

Sincerely,

Information on the Exhibiton and who to send letters to:

exhibitions@sfai.edu
San Francisco Art Institute
Contact: Public Relations
415 749 4507

Please join Director of Exhibitions and Public Programs Hou Hanru (the exhibition’s curator), Dean of Academic Affairs Okwui Enwezor, and SFAI Professors John Rapko and Tony Labat in a public discussion of the exhibition at 12noon on Monday, March 31, in the Lecture Hall on SFAI’s 800 Chestnut Street campus.

Exhibition Dates: 20 March – 31 May, 2008
Opening Reception: Wednesday, March 19th, 5:30 – 7:30
Artist Workshop: Tuesday, March 18th, 4:30 – 7:30
Visiting Artists and Scholars lecture: Wednesday, March 19th 7:30
(Free and open to the public)

SFAI’s exhibitions and public programs—a component of which is the Visiting Artists and Scholars Lecture Series—are supported in part by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the Peter Norton Family Foundation, and the Grants for the Arts/San Francisco Hotel Tax Fund. Additional funding for the Visiting Artists and Scholars Lecture Series has been provided by Bob and Betty Klausner. Additional support for Adel Abdessemed’s exhibition, as well as for his Visiting Artists and Scholars lecture, has been provided by the Cultural Services of the French Consulate in San Francisco.

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34 Responses to Animal Art, Brutality in San Francisco

  1. loveless says:

    thanks for this information. I’m not only sending this out, i’m going to take personal action as much as i can in SF.

  2. Tanya says:

    Here is what I sent: (feel free to copy mine as well if you wish)

    To Whom It May Concern:

    I was shocked and saddened to learn that the San Francisco Art Institute is considering displaying a collection of “art” by ADEL ABDESSEMED. That he murdered six animals with a sledge hammer – documented it, and is using the institutions of art to promote his “work” is revolting. Thank you for suspending the show – I urge you to cancel it all-together.

    Raising moral, ethical, and socio-political questions concerning brutality towards animals is not something that requires gallery culture to ignite public discussion. On the contrary, his “work” is invalid and spurious; hundreds of organizations globally document acts of unimaginable brutality towards animals every single day and take actions to stop it – and not only do they raise these same questions in a much larger arena, but the documentation is not staged for the sake of shocking an audience. If Mr. ABDESSEMED’s intentions were pure, a much more effective statement would have been made by showing the reality of animal slaughter. The contrived setting only takes from the true gravity of what happens to many of the animals that are eaten and/or worn.

    Can you imagine what would be said of an artist that beats a woman to supposedly call attention to sexism – or an artist that brutalizes a child to call attention to the socio-political issues surrounding child abuse? Only with animals who have no voice of their own is this kind of abuse tolerated. I can only believe that ADEL ABDESSEMED is a shock-artist whose hunger for attention has trumped his artistic legitimacy and led him to committing heinous acts under the guise of philosophical inquiry.

    I urge you to quietly remove his “art” from your schedule of displays and refuse to give him any of the controversy he so obviously hungers for.

    Sincerely,
    Tanya L. Dunckel

  3. Tanya says:

    P.S. I hope it’s ok that I copied most of what was written and tweaked it. I was truly disgusted and wanted to get something well written out quickly.

  4. J.F. says:

    What I do not understand is how this can be documented as such and this indvidual has not faced animal cruelty charges by any authorities yet. That is clearly what this is.

  5. Hazel Chambers says:

    Adel is sick…not an artist…and those who support him need a check of their compassion compass too…this is vile…not art.

  6. Artist says:

    These animals were actually killed by a Mexican villiage for food, as they always would do, he just video taped it.

    I am scared personally by the violence people are showing toward the members of SFAI and the art community. When people threaten violence against PEOPLE over the death of animals used for FOOD YOU NEED TO CHECK YOUR MORAL COMPASSES!

    A human life is always more valuable, and the exhibition was closed over violent threats against the gallery personelle and curator. The people who make these threats are the truly sick ones.

  7. Are you saying it’s acceptable to kill animals with a sledgehammer?

  8. Arlene Steinberg says:

    As an artist myself, and someone who tries to continue on a path of enlightenment despite overwhelming evidence of humanity de-volving, I must comment on this so-called “art” and this so-called “artist.” This is NOT art, and, to put it bluntly, this man is a hack and a piece of excrement, not an artist. It is an insult to great artists to compare a creep like Abdessamed to true visionaries like Picasso, Dali, Kahlo, and others who made magnificent and creative statements of violence and social commentary without destroying life. This no-talent, violent and twisted pervert should be shunned by the artistic community (indeed, by ANY community) forever. I personally believe that ALL life is equally valuable, because it is not WHAT is alive (i.e., a dog, a bird, a person, etc.) but what all living things share – that miraculous spark of the divine, life itself – that makes us all equally valuable. I am horrified and offended by the brutality of this wretched piece. There is no statement in this except that the “artist” is a monster. He has relinquished his right to be called a human being.
    I take strong issue with the utterly ridiculous statement that these animals were killed by a Mexican villege for food and the artist merely videotaped it. You would have to have had a really huge bowl of STUPID for breakfast to believe that sledgehammering is a method of dispatch for food animals, even in a backwater Mexican villege. This was clearly staged deliberately by the artist.
    I simply do not understand how anyone could commit such cruelty, much less ceven ome up with such a concept and film it. This person would have to be completely devoid of any feelings and ethical values. This would make him not an artist but a sociopath.
    I can only hope that there is a special place in Hell reserved for people like Adel Abdessamed, where the evil he has inflicted on innocent creatures in this life is returned to him tenfold, for all eternity.

  9. vazalt says:

    There’s a reason bludgeoning animals to death is not popular. Current social awareness of the sentience of animals compels humane treatment.

    How gullible of SFAI to fall for such attention seeking “shock art” and a mediocre psychopathic artist like Adel, who obviously lacks the skill and imagination to draw, paint, photoshop, sculpt, carve, etc, the killing of animals and instead has to actually do it!

    Unlike Adel, I can draw! I’ll be DRAWING Adel with a sledgehammer up his ass.

  10. xmod says:

    The footage in question was shot in Mexico, it was presented to in an effort to increase awareness and to generate a discourse. That discourse has now been censored. An institution of higher learning has now allowed a dangerous precedent to be set by extremists. Rudy Giuliani would be proud. Threats of rape and bombings as a response to an art exhibit are truly fascist in nature.

    This is a slippery slope you embark upon.

  11. Xmod, according to your logic – if I shot an art video of a human being sledgehammered to death in order to “increase awareness and generate a discourse” this should be supported by the art institutions and public outcry should be ignored and considered fascist in nature. The difference is that these are individual animals, who many believe are not as deserving of consideration of their will to live as humans are.

    It’s too easy to call someone a fascist when there is opposition to something. You fail to recognize that the discourse of this ‘art’ has resulted in it’s own suspension from exhibition. There is no reason to place all the power in the gallery and raise an artist who bludgeons-to-death (which I could easily argue is fascist in nature) to a status of authority.

    Clearly we wouldn’t be having this discussion had he documented the slaughter of animals in order to raise public awareness. On the contrary, the animals were killed in a specific way, contracted by the artist in the name of “art”.

  12. Lindsey says:

    “A human life is always more valuable” – Artist

    And who determines that?? Life in any form is valuable in itself. We only say human life is more valuable because we are humans. Just because we are more self-aware and rational than other beings on this planet does NOT mean we have more “value” than the others here.

    I apologize if I went went off on a tangent somewhat.

  13. choufleure says:

    This is amazing really, people have been threatening the school with sexual, racist and violent statements over what? images reveled in the public sphere ? as if anybody did not know about what is going on for animals EVERYWHERE in this world ? are you all just puritan ? oh my god, can’t show that stuff, can’t see that stuff, just like for the Irak war ???
    we all know but don’t want to see it ???? that’s just reassuring isn’t it
    wake up animal lover and go threaten the real butchers !!!!!

  14. I can’t tell you how many times people say to me “how can you care about animals when there are so many terrible things happening to people?”. Simply put, who says you can’t care about both? I do.. so do most animal advocates I know.

    There is plenty of documentation of animal abuse – the difference is that this was done specifically for exhibition, which makes it seem even more cruel. People are mad because it is glorifying it in a gallery setting – it’s not that we can handle seeing it.

  15. k.f. says:

    I live in San Francisco and went to the forum about it only to find out that it was cancelled when I got there. I’ll say here what I would have said there:

    I’ve actually been to a farm outside of Oaxaca Mexico where they do, in fact, use sledgehammers to kill food animals. I couldn’t watch it so I never actually witnessed a killing myself. I don’t know that it was the same farm where this artist shot the footage, but this practice does actually take place. A lot of people — in fact, everyone — who opposes this exhibit has jumped to the conclusion that the artist staged it or did it himself. Knowing that the practice actually happens, I find it more believable that Mr. Abdessemed documented killings that were already taking place anyway. The framing of the shots, staging it in a gallery, and putting it up with no explanation is in large part what has caused the confusion and controversy around the exhibit. I’m not an artist, but I am an art lover, and I personally believe that part of an artists job is to make the work and leave it up to the public to draw their own conclusions, without explaining it, and trusting that the public will be smart enough to figure things out or find their own meaning. That was clearly a mistake in this case.

    Also, out of curiosity I googled Adel Abdessemed and looked at some of his other works. He does in fact draw and sculpt — some of his abstract sculptures are actually pretty cool. So whoever said that he only made this piece because he can’t draw or sculpt, etc., was jumping to yet more unfounded conclusions. Although one other video work of his is a close-up shot of a cat eating a rat. Does that count as animal cruelty also?

    In any case, the exhibit has now been cancelled, and the forum scheduled to discuss it has been cancelled also because of death threats: http://www.sfai.edu/News/NewsDetail.aspx?newsID=1291&navID=214&sectionID=8

    I’m opposed to cruelty against animals also, and was looking forward to hearing the discussion around this show. But I don’t see how death threats and racial slurs (the artist is of Arab descent, the curator of the show is Chinese) furthers the cause of animal welfare or promotes intelligent discussion. To me the people who made those threats are no better and certainly no more enlightened than the right-wing Christians who shoot doctors that perform abortions or bomb Planned Parenthood clinics. The extreme left and the extreme right really do overlap after all.

    The fact that so many people jumped to so many conclusions about both the artist and this one piece of his obviously without doing any research about any of it bothers me almost — almost — as much as the video in the first place. But for the record, I never saw the video, just the stills from it.

  16. r. muir says:

    you are ill-informed about the exhibit, as is often the case with people quick to censor (or to issue fatwas, etc.). The artist “documented” the slaughter of animals; he did NOT murder them. to censure work that offends some is to deprive all; a flawed policy at best. to censor work sight unseen and without accurate information is simply prejudice and bigotry.

  17. R. Muir, That information was not provided on the gallery website. If you’d care to share your source of this information, we can all see it and I’ll correct the error.

  18. Arlene Steinberg says:

    Let’s assume for the moment that the artist – and I use the term VERY loosely – did indeed merely document these animals being killed, and did not arrange for the killing himself. (And if this was the case, why was this not clearly stated?) I just do not comprehend why anyone would WANT to document such a thing and call it art. I could better understand filming it for an animal rights purpose or protest. If I wanted to play devil’s advocate, I could say, okay, look at the outcry this created – perhaps some good will come of it. After all, if this video was circulated to the animal organizations, people who already are aware of such suffering would be the target audience, but by unveiling it to the art world, such horrors would now be shown to a wider audience, many of whom might never have seen anything like this before and how would be moved enough to get active about the plight of animals.

    On the other hand, isn’t this the same guy who starved a dog for another video?
    I see a pattern here.

    “The squirrel that you kill in jest, dies in earnest.” – Henry David Thoreau

  19. DD says:

    First, Steinberg… had you taken 8 seconds to type “starving dog artist” into Google you’d have figured out it wasn’t the same person. I’m glad you didn’t though because you’ve just become the perfect illustration of what a pandemic “i heard” idiocy has become. DO YOUR HOMEWORK BEFORE YOU OPEN YOUR MOUTH.

    Moving on… what a joke… like was already mentioned, part of the experience of art is figuring it out for yourself. So now people want EVERYTHING explained and disclosed before they react like violent mouth breathing mongoloids? Why don’t you lazies do a little research BEFORE opening your trap or threatening people?

    I also like all you armchair critics who apparently have such an in depth knowledge of what “art” is they can automatically discount something they don’t agree with as “non-art.” It’s seriously foolish. Oft times art is based on truth, based on what goes on around us. This happens in Mexico, the ARTIST presents it using video as a medium to convey the truth. He simply documented the occurrences and suddenly his life is in danger?

    The more important issue here that all you haters are conveniently glossing over is the fact people’s lives were threatened because of this and you apparently have no problem with that as long as the exhibit was yanked. Please excuse me but you’re pathetic. How is this any different than rioting because someone drew a picture of Mohammad in a newspaper… or did you think that was justified as well? What about Theo Van Gogh? You know… murdering him because he presented a view (and certain art pieces) that some people disagreed with?

    You people blow my mind!

  20. (From Karen Dawn at Dawnwatch.com)

    I am disappointed that after the efforts of 8,000 people, leading to a temporary closure and a forum, threats made by a few shut down all discussion. Yes, the immediate effect, the closing of the exhibition, was the same. But in my chapter on activism in “Thanking the Monkey” I cite studies (done on humans!) which show that people forced into a choice will choose otherwise at the first safe opportunity, while those believing they made the choice of their own free will tend to stand by that choice. That is something we intuitively understand: we have all seen it in the sexist sitcoms where the wife whispers to her friend “I got him to agree by making him think it was his idea.” And now well documented, it is an important phenomenon for us to keep in mind as we
    work to not only win a few battles, but to make monumental shifts in the way society treats other species.

    I couldn’t help but contrast the threats made against the art gallery employees, with a quote from Captain Paul Watson made last week. If you are not familiar with the work of Paul Watson and Sea Shepherd, check out http://www.SeaShepherd.org — or a fun place to learn about them is in a thrilling article from last year’s National Geographic, which you will find on line at
    http://www.nationalgeographic.com/adventure/0605/features/whales.html
    Watson and his crew risk their lives as they interfere with whalers and sealers. Watson was recently shot in the chest by a whaler, and sealers have physically attacked his crew. Yet when a hunting vessel sank in Canada last week, killing four sealers, Watson slammed the hypocritical regulations of the government that allows sealers to hunt in wooden boats, but he also publicly commented:

    “We will of course rescue any sealers should they require help. The Sea Shepherd crew is motivated by both mercy and compassion and a respect for all life – including the lives of those who inflict pain, suffering and death upon the most innocent of animals – the seal pups.”
    (See the article at
    http://www.630ched.com/News/National/article.aspx?id=9291)
    The attitude reflected in that comment helps maintain the public image of the Sea Shepherd crew as heroes, avoiding the terrorist label the sealing and whaling industries would prefer. It adds to the strength of the anti sealing campaign, which looks like it will soon come to fruition as the European Union moves towards banning Canadian seal products.

    I send a thank you to all of those engaged in strong yet peaceful activism — the heroes on the high seas and ice floes, or rescuing animals from horrendous conditions — and to the thousands at computers, sending notes that bring a museum to shut its doors and hold a forum. Forums change thinking. And as nothing influences thinking in the modern world as powerfully as the media, I thank all those who engage in constant peaceful communication with the media. The effect of your efforts over the last few years has been enormous.

    We have an opportunity to hold that cancelled forum in San Francisco on the Chronicle’s editorial page. You can read the article cited above at
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/03/29/BAGNVSRME.DTL
    And you can sent your thoughts on animal slaughter as art, in a letter to the editor, at letters@sfchronicle.com

    The Chronicle notes, “Please limit your letters to 200 or fewer words … shorter letters have a better chance of being selected for publication.”

    Always include your full name, address, and daytime phone number when sending a letter to the editor. And please be sure not to use any comments or phrases from me or from any other alerts in your letters. Editors are looking for original responses from their readers.

    Yours and the animals’,
    Karen Dawn

    (DawnWatch is an animal advocacy media watch that looks at animal issues in the media and facilitates one-click responses to the relevant media outlets. You can learn more about it, and sign up for alerts at http://www.DawnWatch.com. You may forward or reprint DawnWatch alerts if you do so unedited — leave DawnWatch in the title and include this parenthesized tag line. If somebody forwards DawnWatch alerts to you, which you enjoy, please help the list grow by signing up. It is free.)

    Please go to http://www.ThankingtheMonkey.com to read advance reviews of Karen Dawn’s new book, “Thanking the Monkey: Rethinking the Way we Treat Animals‰ and watch the fun celebrity studded promo video.

  21. vazalt says:

    As a Hispanic, a resent the above posts defending Abdessemed’s art as a simple recording of ROUTINE slaughter techniques in Mexico.

    Mexicans have as modern and sophisticated industrial slaughter techniques and federal oversight as the US does. Furthermore what Abdessemed’s “art” depicts does not comply with Mexico’s Agricultural, Livestock, Fisheries, and Food Supply Standards’ “Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM-008-ZOO-1994” Also the inclusion of a fawn (not a deer, not a doe, but a FAWN!) makes me wonder what the regulations are on the “taking” (hunting, killing) of antler-less deer is in Mexico. I do know a permit is required. Mexican deer populations are in decline and actively managed to increase their numbers. In the US the taking of “antlerless deer” is severely restricted in most states to only a couple days per season. I can’t imagine Mexico being much different. I find it highly unlikely that Abdessemed just happened upon such “clandestine” activities while visiting Mexico and decided then to record them for his “art”

    People like Artist, D.D. and others on this forum would believe most Mexicans are sombrero wearing, siesta taking peasants whacking away at animals with sledgehammers… all in a bigoted and pretentious attempt at being polemic and siding with a sensationalistic and gimmicky artist like Abdessemed.

    (PS. When I say “sophisticated industrial slaughter techniques” I don’t mean it in a nice way. I personally see nothing nice about it! However it is modern, complex and regulated, hence my use of the term sophisticated)

  22. from Mike B:

    Based on the way it was stated in the article, I believe at least most of these “threats” were really “what if” inquiries. For example: “How would you feel IF your children were the ones being snuffed out for the sake of ‘art?'” – but probably not true threats. The people making these statements were most likely just trying to get the Art Institute staff to understand how horrible they believe this display was, as we often do, by comparing it to the same action theoretically being taken against humans. I doubt very many – if any – true threats were tendered. But in typical form for both the offender and the media, they find it satisfying to “get back” at AR activists by smearing them and making the whole movement look bad.

  23. Stew Kipper says:

    I haven’t seen such blatant disregard for life since Andy Warhol’s electric chair pieces. Shame on this so called artist and shame on this so called art school. I say we close it down, as well as every other “cutting edge” garbage dump. I remember when art meant something beautiful to look at. What is this crap? If I wanted to watch murder I’d turn on the TV.

  24. Nina Zurier says:

    I love animals. Yet, when my 13-year-old dog could no longer stand, I paid the SPCA to kill him. Over the years I have paid my vet to have four cats killed, when they were too sick to live more than a few days, on the advice of the vet. When my horse broke his leg, I paid the vet to kill him, and another $150 to remove the body from the stable. Should I have allowed these beloved friends to die a natural death? I was criticized by several friends and family members for not being present at the killings, which they claimed was necessary to prevent trauma in the animal’s final moments. I chose not to be present because my grief would have been apparent to the animals, and created greater fear in them. Remembering these times, I cry even now as I write this.

    The many issues raised by this artist’s work are all worth considering, as we are doing. Threats of violence against individuals who had no part in the exhibition (family of the artist and SFAI staff) are deplorable and gratuitous, and have no value in improving conditions for animals.

    Whether art should be about beauty or social engagement is a major topic of discussion in art schools and in the art world. It is too big for a yes/no right/wrong response, as is the subject of killing animals.

  25. Squiggy says:

    Joshua – you are wrong. dozens of death threats were received by multiple people at the school from the show’s curator to students who sat in the gallery. To have someone call a student and tell them they are going to kill them because an artist filmed some animals being slaughter in Mexico is criminal. Step aside from your ‘ethically fabulous” petty bourgeois lifestyle, and stop defending these “activist” degenerates who really damaged a decent and well-intentioned gallery.

  26. Squiggy:

    Firstly, had you read my comment carefully, you’d see it was not written by me.
    Secondly, it’s laughable that you use the term “bourgeois” to describe my lifestyle – which clearly you know nothing about. Bourgeois means upholding middle class, conventional, and materialistic ideals – in a Marxist sense it means upholding capitalist ideals. Where does social justice, sustainability and animal advocacy fall into that description?
    Thirdly, before you make judgments as to what is ‘criminal’ you should realize that animal cruelty is also considered criminal in Mexico and America – where sledgehammering animals is not considered a acceptable or humane form of slaughter.

  27. […] his message. Video footage of matters like these is a powerful tool for change if used effectively. The Discerning Brute says it well, “documenting animal cruelty is one of the most powerful tools animal advocates […]

  28. Arlene Steinberg says:

    To DD:

    First of all, that’s MS. Steinberg to you. Learn some manners (and grammer) before you open YOUR mouth. That alone should shut you up for about 15 years.

    In fact, don’t open your mouth at all if all you are going to do is self-aggrandize and posit a bunch of pseudo-intellectual ranting. Your own hostility and meanness was so pervasive through your post, it completely diminished whatever point you thought you were making. Yes, I did indeed state an incorrect point, but there is an intelligent and polite way to correct and debate……and then there is your way.

    And DD, you sure are a Master Debater.

    Take an anger management course. Your sorely need one.

    And take an art course while you’re at it. Maybe you’ll learn to tell the difference between cruelty and creativity.

  29. Stillers says:

    Squiggy –

    SFAI has not been ‘decent’ in this case, but complacent, and so ‘well-intentioned’ it’s now resurfacing the road to hell. I see President Bratton got to come at it well after the event in an nicely embarrassing damage limitation exercise.

    Someone said the result of the phonecalls amounted to censorship. Rubbish. Those vicious phonecalls were the most vivid thumbs-down that artaster could have. Abdessemed’s idea was so crassly poor that his piece wouldn’t have got past first base at any art school anywhere in the world (yes, including Algeria). His piece about killing animals asks no questions at all, instead it makes some ghastly, moronically sick assumptions about untrammelled power in an artist, assumptions that went unquestioned all the way to the top of a world-famous art gallery. Hey, transgression, schmansgression… you have to get it right when you transgress!

    ‘Don’t Trust Me’? It’s not exactly trust you’re worried about now, Adel.

  30. […] with intentionally vague context. It would seem that following in the footsteps of Damien Hirst, Adel Abdessmed, and Guillermo Vargas Habacuc could gain any artist immediate and extensive press coverage by […]

  31. jon Tucker says:

    are these animals specialy killed for this?
    in my opinion these are wrong they should stick to pencil and paper

  32. maddy campbell says:

    people in our world are so cruel 😦 this is so sad, I cant believe people with a sick enough mind who want to kill animals in the cruelest ways, and call it “art.” I don’t get why you would want to kill any animal. How would he like it if someone did that to him?

  33. Ashley says:

    i think its so cruel to =( i cant stand that people in this world can do it!!!!! i have a dog called jack. hes a silky terrier…. if anything happened to him id find out who did it and say to him ur going to jail 4 life!! if only it were that simple so please donate money and buy any animal from the RSPCA no matter where u live PLEASE!!!

  34. Madeline says:

    A horse…used for food…I don’t think so. This artist and whoever killed the animals this way are sick people. This is just plain revolting..

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