The decision by the Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath to constitute a committee to screen art works before being exhibited has not gone down well with the artist community.
Noted artist S.G. Vasudev said he was against censorship in any medium, be it art, film or literature.
“I don’t think it is a right move, as no mature artist will behave irresponsibly,” he said.
“Of late, every medium of expression is being questioned by fundamentalists. People have started objecting to art without understanding its content. Yielding to this kind of pressure would send out a wrong signal,” he added.
Art critic Giridhar Khasnis dubbed the move a “knee-jerk reaction”. If committee was being formed to protect quality, it was understandable, he argued, but added that he was “sceptical” about the motive of the committee.
“What else can we expect from an institution controlled by the government?” asked artist Pa. Sa. Kumar.
Chairperson of the Karnataka Lalitkala Academy C.S. Krishna Shetty, however, did not find fault with the move, if it meant the quality of exhibitions improved. “Screening will not amount to censorship.”