HOUSTON PORN-ART GALLERY OWNER SHEDS BIAS

Catalyst January/February Issue 2001

The Redbud Gallery in Houston, Texas is home to a blasphemous, obscene and racist exhibit. The exhibit in question, “Sextablos: Works on Metal,” is a play on the Spanish word, retablo; retablos are Mexican paintings of saints on sheets of tin.

“Sextablos” features many pornographic images, but by far the worst is the one by Michael Thompson that shows a naked woman performing fellatio on Christ nailed to the cross. A book of the display is also available from Bad Press Books. The exhibit began in November and extends to mid-January.

Catholic League director of communications Patrick Scully called the owner of the Redbud Gallery, Gus Kopriva, to ask him about the exhibit. Kopriva agreed that it was offensive to him as a Catholic to show Christ receiving oral sex. Nonetheless, he said, he didn’t have any choice to show part of the exhibit. He then defended the piece by saying that “the idea is to shock the mainstream establishment—pure shock.” When asked if he would show an exhibit that ridiculed the Holocaust, he said, “Oh, yes, I would have to.” He then offered, “Would I accept an exhibit that espoused the KKK? No.”

We jumped on this subject by issuing the following news release:

“Everyone has a hot button and now we know what offends Gus Kopriva—he doesn’t want to offend African Americans. But Catholics and Jews, that’s okay.

“To believe that showing a naked woman performing oral sex on Jesus Christ would shock the mainstream establishment demonstrates how out of touch Kopriva is. Indeed, had he asked someone in the Clinton administration to arrange for a federal grant from the NEA, he surely would have gotten one. All he had to do was call an intern for some help.”

Our news release generated a lot of discussion in Houston on this issue, especially on talk radio. It wouldn’t be a bad idea if you contacted Gus Kopriva as well. He can be reached at Redbud Gallery, 303 East 11th Street, Houston, Texas 77008-7003. Or give him a call at (713) 862-2532.


Share

Written by Bill