News National Gallery banishes portrait of Joko Widodo

Gallery banishes portrait of Joko Widodo

Adam Ferguson
Twitter Facebook Reddit Pinterest Email

The National Portrait Gallery has removed an artistic photograph of Indonesian president Joko Widodo amid public outrage at the execution of two Australian citizens.

The gallery seemed to take down the portrait by Australian photographer Adam Ferguson both to prevent it being damaged and in protest.

• Abbott govt weakened death penalty orders
• AFP must explain its role in Bali executions
• ‘Let’s discuss death penalty’: Joyce

“My feeling … was that in view of the circumstances and our operations, and my best assessment of the risk of damage to the work of art, it was necessary to remove it from public display,” gallery director Angus Trumble told Fairfax Media.

“Also, I was swayed by the statements of both the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition and of course the position of the Parliament and the recall of our ambassador,” Mr Trumble said.

The photographer was reportedly displeased with the portrait’s removal.

“I think anybody that misconstrued the issues of national law in a sovereign country with a picture of the leader of that country has a totally misguided comprehension of the story and what’s gone on,” Mr Ferguson told Fairfax Media.

“It seems to act in anger against the picture, it seems quite ridiculous.”

The portrait was captured as part of a photographic series for TIME magazine.

View Comments