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ADFAS: The Problematic Statue
The toppling and vandalising of prominent statues around the world has been an all-too-frequent news item in recent times. Citing the alleged moral failure or criminal culpability of the toppled subjects, the wrath of outraged crowds has focused on grand sculptural representations of kings, presidents, dictators and celebrated historical identities including Christopher Columbus, Captain James Cook, assorted Confederate generals and Cecil Rhodes. But this is hardly a modern-day phenomenon. The Problematic Statue takes a look at the surprisingly long tradition of trashing public art in the interests of re-writing history.
Geoffrey Edwards was formerly Director of the Geelong Art Gallery. He also held Senior Curatorial positions at the National Gallery of Victoria where he was in charge of the collections of international and Australian sculpture and the Gallery’s holdings of ancient, antique and modern glass. His arts affiliations remain extensive and he is currently engaged with plans to expand Geelong Gallery’s historic building as part of a major re-development of the city’s arts precinct.