Not so Artsy

Alana Branch | Arts & Entertainment Editor

There is art that can inspire and then there is art that can spew anger. Try a whole student body!

Columbia University is making headlines over a sculpture that is causing protest and bringing out a petition, particularly among its undergraduates.

The sculpture, called “Reclining Figure,” was created by beloved British artist Henry Moore circa 1969-70 and has not yet arrived on campus since the announcement was made late last month via a blog post by Roberto Ferrari, the curator of art properties at the Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library.

Ferrari suggested that the controversial piece was in “the form of a woman with her legs outstretched before her, propping herself up with her forearm.”

Meanwhile, most students find it ugly and unfit for Columbia. One student might have said it best: “It interrupts the architectural harmony.”

The university plans to place Moore’s work in front of the Butler Library, which happens to be a hot spot for picture taking. 21-year-old Daniel Stone, one of the creators of the petition, thinks setting the sculpture there would throw off the “Versailles-like symmetry.”

Columbia has since issued a brief statement on the protest:

Discussing the merits of Moore’s sculpture is a conversation quintessentially appropriate for a university community. Successive generations of Columbia students, with their own strong opinions, will no doubt continue debating whether this modernist work of art enhances or diminishes our classically beautiful Morningside campus.

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