MANILA, August 9, 2011—Various Christian organizations will continue filing criminal charges against the Cultural Center of the Philippines and the artist of the controversial art exhibit at the CCP.
The CCP agreed to shut down the exhibit Tuesday but lawyer Jo Imbong of the St. Thomas More Society of Lawyers said they will pursue the case because “the Christian nation has been offended.”
“The Christian groups will pursue the charges because a serious offence has been committed and the CCP and the artist are accountable under the law,” Imbong said.
“The Christian nation has been offended. Besides, it will set an example to all. The criminal case is about a public crime that can be filed by any citizen anytime,” she said.
Various Christian groups have been demanding the CCP to shut down an installation by artist Mideo Cruz wherein he combined religious symbols and phallic objects in his supposed art work.
Catholic bishops and their flocks who saw the exhibit called it a “sacrilegious and blasphemous” art exhibit which had been running since July 17 and is supposed to end on August 21.
Imbong earlier said that the CCP and Cruz are liable for violating Revised Penal Code’s (RPC) Article 201 on immoral doctrines, obscene publications, and indecent shows.
The decision to temporarily close the CCP’s visual art section, where Mideo’s work was located, came a day after Ilocos Rep. Imelda Marcos visited the CCP and slammed its officials for allowing such exhibit.
Marcos is the wife of former President Ferdinand Marcos and founder of the CCP 40 years ago.
But Virgie Lamoso of the CCP’s Museum and Visual Arts said management has decided to close the main gallery for security reasons after Cruz’s installation was vandalized last week.
For his part, Pro-Life Philippines president Eric Manalang, one of those who demanded that the exhibit be stopped, said ending the exhibit will not stop their protest rally on Wednesday outside the CPP.
“Stopping the exhibit does not stop the protest tomorrow… the bigger picture of our government being the pied piper leading us to disaster on a straight path going to hell,” Manalang said. [CBCPNews]