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Australia: Distributors force art magazine to censor cover

12 August 2016

vault magazine australia
The August 2016 issue of Australian arts magazine featuring a painting of a pregnant, nude woman by well-known, New York-based artist Lisa Yuskavage has been censored at newsstands after distributors forced editors to either package the issue in an opaque sleeve or cover up the nipples of the subject, reported Australia’s ABC on 9 August 2016.

“We pushed back … but we had deadlines; we had to get the magazine out. We were left with no choice, ultimately,” Vault’s editor Neha Kale said about their distributor Gordon & Gotch’s instructions.

Kale told The Guardian on 9 August 2016 that her staff opted to use round, yellow stickers to cover the nipples. The censored cover would only appear at newsagents, whom the distributor feared would not stock the magazine with the unadulterated cover; the magazine would appear with no alterations in art galleries and speciality shops.

The distributor has not made an official statement, except to say it was “following regulations”.

“We didn’t really expect the [distributor’s] reaction. We don’t want to blame the distributor. This is about a broader understanding of how different sorts of female bodies are perceived,” Kale told The Sydney Morning Herald on 10 August 2016.


Photo: Vault magazine website


Sources

» The Sydney Morning Herald – 10 August 2016:
Vault magazine has cover art censored with yellow dots covering nipples

» Artnet – 9 August 2016:
Magazine forced to censor cover of Lisa Yuskavage nude

» The Guardian – 9 August 2016:
Art magazine covers nipples of nude by celebrated artist with yellow stickers

» ABC – 9 August 2016:
Art magazine questions censorship of Lisa Yuskavage nude


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