BY ART + TIMES:
Iraq’s artists are concerned that the country’s cultural life is in rapid decline due to religious laws still in place years after the execution of its former strong man Saddam Hussein. To express yourself artistically is OK, just as long as you cover it up!
Yasir Abdul-Hakim, a sculpture student at Iraq’s Fine Arts Academy, wanted to learn his craft by making copies of a nude Greek statue. A professor told him to cover them with clothes. He covered the first one, but the second one he copied naked, as it was.
“One of the professors told me: ‘What are you doing? You are exposing your life to danger’,” Abdul-Hakim said with a bitter smile.
“I would like to do nude models from Greek civilization. But I cannot execute them due to the religious tide we are in, which no one can deny,” he said. “If my professor at college accepts it, society outside will not.”