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Last Updated: Tuesday, 9 March, 2004, 11:24 GMT
Artist defends naked photographs
Artist Betsy Schneider, whose exhibition showing naked pictures of her daughter was closed after a police visit, has defended her work.

Writing in the Independent newspaper, Ms Schneider said: "I want my work to provoke thought."

"I didn't expect the show to be without problems, but I didn't expect it to be this big a deal," she said.

The exhibition, at the Spitz venue in Spitalfields, central London, closed after police visited it on Sunday.

The pictures show Ms Schneider's daughter Madeleine as a baby, a toddler and as a five-year-old. The artists took photos of her daughter twice a day for the project.

'Hadn't been done'

"I wanted to document her, just to record this being growing," she said.

"I was a practising artist and I thought this was something that hadn't been done before."

The Independent also canvassed opinion from other figures over the exhibition, including the artist Anthony Gormley and Tink Palmer from the children's charity Barnado's.

Ms Palmer said she had no problems being shown in a home "when it is on public display it sparks lots of issues about your own children's privacy".

Mr Gormley said: "I think everybody knows the difference between work that is made for sexual stimulation and something that might use sexuality in a much more complex way."

'No complaints'

Ms Schneider said she had waited for Madeleine to say she did not want to take part in the project any more, but her daughter was supportive.

"It's become an integral part of her life every morning. She gets me out of bed now and wakes me up to do it," she said.

A Scotland Yard spokesman added on Monday: "Officers attended the gallery on 7 March at the request of the owner of the gallery who wanted advice as to whether the photographs on display were indecent.

"No complaints have been made to the police.

"The matter has been passed on to the obscene publications unit."

Two years ago police threatened to seize three of American photographer Tierney Gearon's images of her children in the nude from the Saatchi gallery in London.

A police report was passed to the Crown Prosecution Service but there was no case brought for prosecution and the photos remained on display.

Saatchi gallery will not be prosecuted
15 Mar 01  |  Entertainment
Controversial photos stay put
12 Mar 01  |  Entertainment

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