Coutesy Allegra LaViola Gallery, New York
Manhattan, NY - A current exhibition at the Lower East Side has drawn fiery opposition from some unlikely art critics: Orthodox Jews. The show includes nude paintings,
Rumblings of dissatisfaction began with a visit from an irate rabbi during the opening and have continued for the duration of the show, culminating with three visits from the police in the last two weeks.
The gallery is located at the border of two Lower East Side communities, with the neighborhood’s fast-growing art district to the west and a long-established Orthodox enclave to the east.
While the exhibitor contends that the images are “nothing more explicit than you would see on a magazine stand,” neighbors argue they are too explicit for a gallery located just down the street from a boys’ Yeshiva
The exhibitor said that although many boys pass the gallery on their way to school, she had never seen anyone stop outside until Wednesday, when two boys ran up, pointed, and banged on the glass windows.
The gallery has been fielding phone calls all week from angry neighbors, including the local rabbi, who asked the exhibitor to put up a curtain to cover the offending paintings.