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Artist built “Rape Tunnel” a big hoax


In early-mid September of last year, a bit of blog-fodder circulated around in which Ohio artist Richard Whitehurst was planning to pull off a huge-scale installation piece involving a tapering 22 foot tunnel that forces you to crawl into a submissive position as you reach the end. The subject will find the artist waiting at the end of the tunnel where he will try his best to overpower and rape the person who crawls through. Several blogs have tried picking up the scent on Google only to find that this Whitehurst fellow does not actually exist, nor the interviewer who posted the article on ArtLurker. Does that mean that the Ohio-art-scene doesn’t actually exist as well? The end word is, that image of the mythical “Rape Tunnel” is actually a photo of an artist in front of a fan he’d built and the article was published with the intent “to spark conversation on the state of art for a few hours with coverage of an entirely fake art project.” However, it was picked up by Gawker, subsequently turning it into a huge fiasco, and ArtLurker was not able to announce that it was after all, a hoax. A project so morally destitute and controversial must be in the end, too good to be true (?). What do you guys think? Btw, B/D does not support rape…

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Tom Howes

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