While the world has followed the appalling destruction of art by ISIS and Muslim extremists, it is easy to forget that such religious extremism is not limited to Islam. We saw such an example recently in Israel. Another such case has emerged in Russia where Russian Orthodox activists destroyed Soviet avant-garde art deemed insulting to their religion. The attack led the head of the Hermitage Museum Mikhail Piotrovsky to denounce the attack as further evidence of a “sick” Russian society and the rise of “marginal forces against cultural rights” in the country.
The exhibit is called “Sculptures that We Don’t See” and the vandals targeted works by Soviet sculptor Vadim Sidur, whose nonconformist works were censored by Soviet authorities.
The attack is attributed to the group God’s Will, led by radical Russian Orthodox activist Dmitry Tsorionov known as “Enteo.” He has declared that Putin is a gift from God and that Russians are “unworthy” of him. Tsorionov denounced the exhibit as containing an “indecent” depiction of Jesus Christ and a “dirty, harsh mockery of Jesus Christ and the saints.”
Many of us could not escape the irony of watching Putin at the Olympics in Moscow honor past Russian writers, some of which were banned and abused by the Russian government. As a KGB colonel, Putin worked for the agency that abused artists and writers during the Soviet period.
A video posted on YouTube shows a female activist together with Tsorionov tearing Sidur’s linoleum engraving of a naked Jesus Christ from its platform and stomping on it. He also smashed a plate holding one of the cloth heads that comprises a work by Megasoma Mars called “Beheading of St. John the Baptist #2.”
The violence has rekindled criticism of Putin who has risen to power in a coalition with conservative religious elements in the Orthodox Church.
28 thoughts on “Russian Orthodox Extremists Destroy Russian Avante Garde Art In The Hermitage”
What you are describing is vigilantism and/or anarchy.
This is a country of laws, and it is against the law to murder someone simply because YOU think the law-makers have not written enough laws or the right laws to deal with things that irk YOU.
Anna, I am not condoning the killing of abortion doctors. I am correcting your misunderstanding of the motivation of those who do it. The motivation is not religious. It is based in justifiable homicide.
States have always been the government that defines murder and that have created the appropriate punishments for murder. But in 1973, the federal high court decided that there existed a Constitutional right to privacy for the mother which would trump State laws regarding murder. They blocked any State law that would define a woman killing her unborn child as being murder. As a result, many people are disturbed to find their neighbors murdering their babies and nobody is doing anything about it. More than a million unborn babies are killed every year! Most of these are law abiding citizens and do not take the law into their own hands. They picket and speak out against mothers killing their unborn children.
In regards to the murder of abortionists, only about 9 murders have happened over the last 25 years or so regarding abortion. I think maybe 4 of them were doctors who performed abortions. Not even close to the number of people killed in Chicago over a weekend, or to the number of Christians beheaded by ISIS.
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