Prestisjetunge Metropolitan Museum of Arts i New York har i all stillhet fjernet tre kunsthistoriske bilder av Muhammed fra utstilling, og de kommer neppe igjen når museet gjenåpner den islamske kulturdelen i 2011, skriver New York Post.
The museum said the controversial images — objected to by conservative Muslims who say their religion forbids images of their holy founder — were «under review.»
Critics say the Met has a history of dodging criticism and likely wants to escape the kind of outcry that Danish cartoons of Mohammed caused in 2006.
«This is typical of the Met — trying to avoid any controversy,» said a source with inside knowledge of the museum.
The Met currently has about 60 items from its 60,000-piece Islamic collection on temporary display in a corner of its vast second-floor Great Hall while larger galleries are renovated. But its three ancient renderings of Mohammed are not among them.
Endrede kulturelle oppfatninger slår ut i museets kategorisering, men disse endringene har en vri som er politisk korrekt. Man tar politiske hensyn og det er betenkelig, mener ekspert på islamsk kunst, Kishwar Rizvi:
Three years ago, the Met changed its «Primitive Art Galleries» to the «Arts of Africa, Oceania and the Americas» for the sake of political correctness, said author Michael Gross, author of «Rogues’ Gallery,» a book about the Met.
Just recently, it decided its highly anticipated «Islamic Galleries» will be given an awkward new name ahead of the 2011 opening. Visitors will stroll around rooms dedicated to art from «Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia and Later South Asia,» according to a museum press release.
Islamic art expert Kishwar Rizvi said the Met — which has one of the world’s best Islamic collections — has nothing to fear from Mohammed.
«Museums shouldn’t shy away from showing this in a historical context,» said Rizvi, historian of Islamic Art at Yale University.
Rizvi said it was «a shame» the museum dropped the word Islamic from the title.
«It’s cumbersome and problematic to base it on nationalistic boundaries,» the historian said.
This Ottoman miniature from the Siyer-i Nebi shows Islams prophet Mohammed in the typical way he was portrayed in Islamic art after the ban on showing him was put in place. The prophet is shown faceless, kneeling at the Kaaba, Mecca.
New York City – Metropolitan Museum of Art to withdraw Images of Muhammad