Tuesday, October 27, 2009

surely some mistake...

In May 2008 a controversey over some nude teen photographs by internationally aclaimed artist Bill Henson swept the nation as the Ros Oxley Gallery in Paddington was raided by police with the offending items carted off to assess whether they could be deemed to be illegal porn. Self appointed child advocate Hetty Johnson demanded that heads roll, shock jocks went into screech mode, State and Federal politicians weighed in and the owner of the gallery, Ros Oxley who resides in Sydney's, if not the countries most splendid harbourside home, the gothic pile Carthona, decamped with her family to Switzerland for a few months.

Oxley friend and Leader of the Opposition Malcolm Turnbull declared the photos to be art and confided that the walls of his Point Piper mansion hosted a few Henson items. But newly elected Prime Minister Kevin Rudd weighed into the frenzy describing the photos (without actually seeing them) as "absolutely revolting".

Fast forward to the present date and the soon to be announced Prime Minister's Literary Awards  which has a $100,000 prize up for grabs. And there amongst the contendors- Henson vocal defender David Marr with his latest book 'The Henson Case' in which the brilliant Sydney Morning Herald journalist and former Media Watch host dissects the whirlwind that surrounded the whole affair. Winning the prize would catapult the book into instant best seller status.

A prize giving ceremony not to be missed.