Vienna is adopting an unconventional approach to art regulation, using the adults-only web portal OnlyFans to showcase its most “explicit” artworks.
The Austrian capital’s tourist authority is now exhibiting art from four of the city’s most renowned institutions on the adults-only platform in reaction to social media platforms’ banning of certain creative material including nudity.
Several Austrian museums, notably the Albertina and the Leopold, have lately encountered difficulties while uploading artwork on social media accounts, resulting in the banning of certain works of art that include nudity.
In July, the Albertina Museum’s TikTok account was banned – and subsequently deleted – for showing works by Nobuyoshi Araki, a Japanese artist and photographer, that included a partly covered breast.
Instagram said in 2019 that a painting by renowned Flemish artist Peter Paul Rubens breached the platform’s community standards. Earlier this year, when the Leopold Museum celebrated its twentieth anniversary, a video posted on Facebook and Instagram featuring Koloman Moser’s work was rejected by the sites due to it being identified as “possibly sexual.”
Now, these works and more of Vienna’s “18+ material” are available in their entirety, uncensored, on OnlyFans – a subscription-based website best known for sharing and watching pornographic video.
According to the capital’s tourism board, Vienna is home to “some of the world’s most renowned artists […] whose works pushed the boundaries of what was considered acceptable in art and society at the time […] so it’s unsurprising that some of their artworks ran afoul of the censors more than a century ago.”
And the fight against censorship continues: with the development of social media, such restrictions have made a comeback. Nudity and ‘lewd’ material are firmly in the crosshairs of major social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook.”
Additionally, the tourist board claimed that “Vienna and its art institutions are victims of this new wave of conservatism,” which is why they chose to include “the capital’s world-famous ‘explicit’ artworks on OnlyFans.”
Vienna’s tourist authority also alluded to the platform’s unfiltered nature, stating that it “shook up social media by allowing producers to openly distribute nudist and pornographic material with users.”
Subscribers will get either a free Vienna city card or a complimentary admission ticket to one of the highlighted institutions, where the city’s tourist office has said that “uncensored pieces of art in issue may be seen in person.”
OnlyFans itself ran into censoring problems in August when it implemented a restriction on “sexually explicit material” – a move that sparked such outrage that it was overturned only days later.