Chinese state TV censors genitals of Michelangelo’s David; netizens amused

July 9, 2012Jing Gao2 Comments, , , , , , , , , , ,

From Sina Weibo

One man’s meat is another man’s poison. It seems that employees working at China Central Television find David, a masterpiece created by the Italian artist Michelangelo, so distasteful that they blurred David’s private parts in a newscast about an exhibition in the National Museum of China. The video clip and the picture of a censored David have become viral on Chinese social media and are derided by netizens.


Video clip (Jump to 0’49″ for the censored David)

According to the video clip of the television newscast, to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the National Museum of China, the largest ever exhibition of Italian artworks of the 15th and 16th centuries opened on July 7 and will be running until April 30,2013. The three-part exhibition, titled Renaissance in Florence: Masterpieces and the protagonists, showcases works of master artists, including Leonardo da Vinci, Raffaello and Michelangelo. Many of the artworks had never been shown to the Chinese public before.

“Now Venus de Milo will have to wear a bra!” A net user exclaimed. “The cover-up will only further demonstrate their sordid minds and dirty souls,” another user commented.

The news program was aired on CCTV’s news channel at 11:48 a.m. on July 9. It is said that the unexpectedly massive online repercussions to the pixelization of the artwork made CCTV give in, and in a later rerun of the newscast, the statue’s nudity was shown  in its entirety again.

Selected comments on Sina Weibo (One of top ten trending topics on Sina Weibo; about 110,000 related posts)

番薯骑士: The obscene can only see obscenity!

小洁:Wow, what a country of etiquette!

寻求真相0:This is artwork! Why even this one gets a mosaic (slang for pixelization) in this amazing country? Just don’t display it then!

天九明:Actually, if you don’t blur it, people won’t think too much about it and instead just see it as a piece of artwork. Now that you’ve blurred it, it makes people uncomfortable and think too much! Huh!

野岅惠美:Isn’t it normal for a children’s channel? Don’t make a fuss.

黑刀螂:What kind of filth is in the head of such a mouthpiece for the state! [怒]

河马辛普森:Even Rose 15 years ago was removed with nothing left, much less hundreds-year-old David. [挖鼻屎] (Read: Titanic 3D–A sign of China’s stricter censorship)

橘子哥:This has really ruined such a great art treasure.

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2 comments to “Chinese state TV censors genitals of Michelangelo’s David; netizens amused”

  1. YiYang | July 10, 2012 | Permalink Reply

    You do realize that that’s not Michelangelo’s David, right? If you compare the David in the video to the actual David, the arm angle, head angle, everything is off.

  2. Blacksoth | July 11, 2012 | Permalink Reply

    This is actually Apollo (sometimes called David-Apollo) and IS a Michelangelo sculpture (unless it’s a copy there are many) but is not what people know as “David”.

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