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Facebook Deletes Icelandic Artist’s Video Featuring Free Nipples

Facebook Deletes Icelandic Artist’s Video Featuring Free Nipples

Alice Demurtas
Words by
Photos by
RentVine/Creative Commons

Published June 4, 2018

Following their company policy against female nipples, Facebook recently deleted a video posted online in occasion of a Reykjavik Arts Festival exhibit showing topless young women, RÚV reports.

The video belongs to Icelandic artist and student Borghildur Indriðadóttir, whose exhibit DEMONCRAZY shows topless young women stand defiantly amongst dusty paintings of besuited men—the image of power they have grown up with. “After the gender wage gap protests of recent years, and the #MeToo movement, it’s a simple but effective idea that communicates the city’s feminist zeitgeist,” says one of our reporters.

An integral part of the exhibition, the video showed a performance called ‘Drosophila,’ which took place on the opening weekend of the Reykjavík Arts Festival. Women emerged topless from the Alþingi parliament building, and walked topless through downtown Reykjavík to the Reykjavík Art Museum.

But because it showed female nipples, a video of the event was immediately shut down by Facebook administrators. All the comments and likes left under Borghildur’s pictures were also deleted. We at the Grapevine had similar posts and videos removed from Instagram shortly after the performance, marked as “sensitive content.”

It’s not the first time that Facebook has shut down an Icelandic exhibition because of free nipples. In December 2017, a Facebook event organised by a Danish photographer living in Iceland, Therese Precht Vadum, was also shut down, as it featured a picture of a female nipple. This effectively made it harder for her to promote her exhibition.

In a country famous for its SlutWalks and #freethenipple campaign, Instagram and Facebook’s policy has prompted a heated debate on why male nipples are considered acceptable, whereas female nipples are considered unacceptable.

But Facebook and Instagram can’t censor the offline world. You can check out Borghildur’s photos at the Austurvöllur parliament square until June 15th.


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