Saturday, September 10, 2005


Danish artist and writer Michael Witte made the headlines in the early eighties when he produced a poster which was an exact replica of a poster for a Danish pig export firm, the only difference was that Witte had written "Danish pigs are healthy, they are strutting with penicillin" on it.
This earned him a stint in court, sued by the Danish Co-operative Butcheries who felt their business had been harmed and wanted the poster banned. Eventually they lost the case and Witte went on to produce several other posters and books. He also has this quite funny story to tell:

Growing up in Flensborg, close to the German border in the southern part of Jutland, the young Witte would daily walk past a small square with a statue of a naked Roman soldier. One night somebody, in uplifted spirits no doubt, had decided to cover the soldier's penis and testicles with red paint. This greatly upset the local citizens, and a group of communal workers were dispatched to scrub off the paint and restore the gallant pride of the warrior. Unfortunately the good men only cared to use their rags and cleaning utentials on the overpainted parts and not on the rest of the statue, which was matted and grey from years of exposure to the elements. The result was that afterwards the statue stood in its usual eroded grey, but now also displayed a highly visible set of gleaming metallic genitals, shining brightly every time even the smallest ray of light hit them.
A sight to be seen.

1 comment:

Max- New Zealand said...

Hi Lennard, I really enjoyed this little story. I was searching for the source of a quote from Borgen which I didn't understand, and your blog was the top result. Thanks for the context, it really is such a good example of how the world works.