Before reading on take a look at this.
That oil on canvas painting is on display at the Kingston Public Library. Entitled Emperor Haute Couture, it features a nude Prime Minister Stephen Harper, lounging like Julius Caesar and being served a cup of Tim Hortons coffee. As Sun News reports, the painting by Kingston artist Margaret Sutherland is on display as part for the Kingston Arts Council annual juried show. And it can be yours for $5,000.
But some people in the Limestone City aren’t too happy about the painting’s location. The room where it hangs is frequented by children. As a result, library employees are taking down the painting every time the room holds a program that children are attending. “Parents were concerned about what was on the walls, and that kind of started off the process of the board looking at their policy on the use of library space for art exhibitions,” chief librarian Patricia Enright told the Kingston Whig-Standard. “And so it was trying to balance the needs of many stakeholders in terms of the room. And yes, while we do support kind of intellectual freedom, we were also kind of in a very difficult position because of the multi-use of the room.”
Sutherland is originally from New Brunswick, but attended Queen’s University in Kingston before graduating from the New York Academy of Art in 2001.