The Curmudgeon

YOU'LL COME FOR THE CURSES. YOU'LL STAY FOR THE MUDGEONRY.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Blasphemous Frog

The sixteenth Daddy Goodspeak has issued a solemn moral anathema against a sculpture by a mischievous German artist named Martin Kippenberger, who went to his reward at a rather early age in 1997. The sculpture is called Zuerst die F├╝sse ("Feet First") and depicts a paunchy, somewhat fanged humanoid frog holding an egg in its left hand and a beer mug in its right. The frog's eyeballs are spiralled in agony and its tongue is hanging out. The moral difficulties have arisen because the frog is nailed to a cross; the egg and beer mug presumably being transformed by this context into blasphemous parodies of the two thieves. The Vatican has written that the piece "wounds the religious sentiments of so many people who see in the cross the symbol of God's love", although the sculptor apparently claimed (doubtless with a straight face) that it was "a self-portrait illustrating human angst". The president of the regional government of Alto Adige went on hunger strike to demand the frog's removal: "Surely this is not a work of art but a blasphemy and a disgusting piece of trash that upsets many people," he foamed. His hunger strike ended in a hospital visit, although regrettably it is not recorded whether he had to be force-fed.

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