At Large  August 10, 2019  The Art & Object Team

Facebook Doesn’t Want You To See This Matisse

© 2019 Succession H. Matisse, Paris/Artists Rights Society (ARS) New York

Henri Matisse. Large Reclining Nude. 1935. The Baltimore Museum of Art: The Cone Collection. BMA 1950.258

We recently ran an image of this Matisse on Facebook in conjunction with our story about the new Center for Matisse Studies at the Baltimore Museum of Art. To ensure that our followers saw this important story, we attempted to “boost” the post several times, but our boost was repeatedly denied for “violating Facebook policy.” When asked what policy we were violating, we were first told the image could not run because it showed nudity. We informed Facebook that this is in fact not a photograph of a nude person but an artistic representation. Facebook then came back and said the work was sexually suggestive. We asked if Facebook would have a problem running images of the Sistine Chapel's Creation of Adam? Or what about The David? No response to these questions from Facebook. It would seem that Facebook thinks even women in art need to “cover up.” What is it about the celebration of the female form that Facebook (and the rest of the world for that matter) takes issue with? We certainly do not know. If you believe in art over censorship, please share this story.

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