Peter Meyer, director of the Trapholt Art Museum in Kolding, drew international notoriety in February 2000 after the art exhibit, featuring the goldfish, was dubbed cruelty to animals.
The display's blenders were plugged in and visitors were invited, if they wanted, to blend the fish. Somebody did and two goldfish were ground up."
Killer Art: Excerpts!: "Sometimes animal actors are sacrificed in the name of art. British artist, J.J. Charlesworth created an unusual video installation for his final graduation show at Goldsmith's College in July 1996. "[It] was probably the most bankrupt and self-defeating experiment in making aggressive statements about how the artworld works," expained Charlesworth.
Thanatochrome (A.K.A. Goldfish in a Blender) involved a video tape of the artist placing a goldfish in a blender, pressing a big red button and pureeing the poor fish.
The piece got Charlesworth into trouble with the British animal rights group RSPCA because depiction of mutilation of animals on video is a criminal offense. "I had an interview with two proto-Nazis in RSPCA ties who demanded the video," the artist said. "I told them I'd lost it in a pub when I was pissed."
Since the infamous video, Charlesworth has been putting on self-financed and self-produced shows and "attacking the sacred cows of the London art world that have contributed to the dumbing-down of art culture."
Asked if he had learned a lesson from Thanatochrome the artist replied, "There's no lesson to learn. I just like doing things that are relevant."
CNN - arts & style - Police save goldfish from blender-art exhibit - Feb. 15, 2000: "COPENHAGEN (Reuters) -- Police on Friday removed from an exhibition a work of art with goldfish as the focal point after an animal rights group complained that the fish were in peril.
The creation by artist Marco Evaristti consisted of goldfish swimming inside regular kitchen-blenders. Exhibition visitors could switch on a blender, transforming the content to fish soup, the Ritzau news agency reported. "
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