Mercedes-Benz Issues Apology to Chris Silva, Censored Artist

Chris Silva
(Photo : Chris Silva) Chris Silva's "Up a Wall" artwork that was censored, but not by Mercedes-Benz.

New media artist Chris Silva charged earlier this month that his work in a festival at Los Angeles' Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) featuring a 2010 Peugeot race car had been censored by the festival's sponsor, Mercedes-Benz, but it was the fault of a third party.

Silva's work "Up a Wall" (2012) in the exhibit "Bring Your Own Beamer" was part of two-week-long multimedia festival "Transmission LA: AV Club" curated by the Beastie Boys' Mike D.

In an email to ArtInfo, Mercedes-Benz USA addressed the incident:

The Transmission LA: AV Club exhibit was very successful and over 30,000 people attended over the 17 day period. After reading your story, we "MBUSA" looked into the matter. The facts are a third party agency working on the event did not have the authority to ask Mr. Silva to remove his art and this person never actually spoke to MBUSA on-site regarding the matter - they in fact expressed a POV that was not true or ever said by someone from Mercedes-Benz USA. 

The actions of this individual was wrong and counter to Transmission LA: AV Club theme, which was a great expression of creative collaboration of artists and MOCA.

Mr. Silva was in touch with Jeffrey Deitch concerning the matter and the above was explained to Mr. Silva via email a few weeks ago with an apology.

It's refreshing to see a  case of corporate sponsorship not impinging upon art, and in fact, respecting creativity of expression.

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