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Interventionist Artist Arrested after Revealing Performance

November 12, 2014

Performance artist Steven Cohen was arrested by Parisian police "for indecent exposure." Cohen was dressed like a bird in a "garter, tights, and long red gloves," and proceeded to walk a rooster around underneath the famous Eiffel Tower. The rooster was not attached to a leash in his hand, however. It was attached to his penis. In this performance, Cohen wanted to "evoke his situation, torn between two countries -- his native country of South Africa and France where he currently lives," claimed his lawyer. Cohen's lawyer was disgusted with the fact that Cohen's arrest lasted so long, stressing that Cohen simply wanted to illustrate his personal struggles with his audience. “He is a performance artist who stages interventions in the public realm and in gallery/theatre spaces. His work invariably draws attention to that which is marginalised in society, starting with his own identity as a gay, Jewish man,” the South African agency says. Would you consider this to be a form of interventionist art that can be acceptable? Or do you believe that because Cohen was blatantly exposing his genitals, it was inappropriate? I believe that Cohen could have edited his artwork without completely showing his genitals. This way, his performance art may have been reasonable. However, since Paris is a very attractive place for tourists and families, I feel that he should not have been exposing himself to the public. What do you think? Read the full article here: http://www.thelocal.fr/20130911/cops-arrest-coq-walking-artist-at-eiffel-tower

 

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