Watchdog decides that with only one complaint, nude show goes on

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 11 May, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 11 May, 2010, 12:00am

The Television and Entertainment Licensing Authority will not take further action against an exhibition featuring paintings of nude females by an art consultant to Louis Vuitton Asia-Pacific.

'We don't need further information now. We will monitor the case and will not take further action at this stage,' a spokeswoman for the authority said.

Tela decided not to inspect the exhibition and did not refer the case to the Obscene Articles Tribunal for classification because only one public complaint had been received about the exhibition, she said.

The exhibition 'White Girls', which has been on display at Korkos Gallery in Prince's Terrace, Mid-Levels, since Friday, ends next month.

The 67 works, which include 10 large oil paintings and one neon artwork of nude females, are by Jonathan Thomson, a consultant to the French fashion house and curator of its galleries in Hong Kong and Taipei.

Four police officers visited the exhibition last Friday saying they had received a public complaint about the paintings. The complainant said the works were obscene and the police referred the case to Tela, which enforces the Control of Obscene and Indecent Articles Ordinance.

The police did not reveal who made the complaint.

But Thomson said the paintings were purely artworks: 'I found it very surprising that people would think the exhibition is too rude.

'I was told [by Tela] that I don't need to do anything. The exhibition will continue,' he said yesterday after talking to a Tela case officer.

Thomson, who has served as deputy secretary general of the Arts Development Council, said the paintings celebrated the beauty of women and did not contain any indecent or obscene elements.

Adjudicators of the Obscene Articles Tribunal said art displayed in a gallery or museum could be exempt from the law if they were not shown in obvious sites and were visible only from within the premises.