A controversial painting at a public art gallery has been slammed as “hate speech”.
The onbeskofte artwork, where the phrase “F*** WHITE PEOPLE” is written and repeated throughout an exhibition at the South African National Gallery, is the handiwork of artist Dean Hutton, and forms part of the The Art Of Disruptions exhibition.
Hutton’s work consists of graphic wallpaper, a chair covered in the same black and white printed fabric, and a pair of golden boots.
But Joy Termorshuizen was not impressed, and posted a message in the Facebook group Hout Bay Complete: “This awful ‘piece of art’ is on open display in the Iziko National Gallery in Cape Town for all to see. Cape Town is full of tourists at the moment. Is THIS the image we want to display to the world? I have lodged a complaint with the DA [Democratic Alliance]. If this is not hate speech then I don’t know what is.”
However, DA spokeswoman Phumzile van Damme said she was unaware of the complaint.
The Daily Voice contacted Hutton, a 40-year-old white woman, who referred us to her website, fuckwhitepeople.org.
Hutton, who calls herself a “genderqueer artist”, says she’s min gespin about how white people feel about her art.
She says on her website: “If you are white you’re probably feeling some type of way right now. I’m not sorry for that. White people have been having a lot of feelings lately about ‘reverse racism’ as if it’s a thing.
“White people made racism, and made sure it is deeply embedded in our social systems, law, economy, institutions and individuals. So this provocation is here to make you feel that ‘white pain’. Breathe deeply through it. I’m here to destabilize all of our white spaces.”
Earlier this year Hutton photographed varsity student Zama Mthunzi wearing the words F*** White People on his T-shirt.
“He was threatened with expulsion and a case at the Human Rights Commission. None of the complainants said anything about the front of the T-shirt that read: ‘Being Black is S***’,” writes Hutton.
Iziko Museum did not reply to Daily Voice queries.