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Swedish culture minister in racist art row

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Alison Clarke
WVoN co-editor

The Swedish culture minister, Lena Adelsohn Liljeroth, has been urged to resign after she performed a clitoridectomy on a cake depicting the torso of a black woman.

The cake, created by a black male artist Makode Aj Linde, was supposed to highlight the issue of female circumcision.

It was part of an art exhibition to celebrate World Art Day on April 15th at the Museum of Modern Art in Stockholm.

Aj Linde posted a photograph of the minister cutting the cake on his Facebook page, which resulted in a flurry of online comments accusing the minister of racism, among other things.

The National Afro-Swedish Association called it a “racist spectacle” and said that Liljeroth should resign.

For her part, the minister says she can understand the Association’s concerns but that the situation had been misinterpreted.

“I understand quite well that this is provocative and that it was a rather bizarre situation,” she said.

“I was invited to speak at World Art Day about art’s freedom and the right to provoke. And then they wanted me to cut the cake”, adding that “art needs to be provocative”.

Here’s a video of the event so you can decide for yourself.

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