Chapman Brothers' Hitler Golf Obstacle Upsets Jewish Organization

Chapman Brothers' Hitler Golf Obstacle Upsets Jewish Organization
Doug Fishbone & Friends Adventureland Golf, Installation shot, Grundy Art Gallery

Jake and Dinos Chapman never cease to provoke — and since their infamous "Hell" installation, Nazism has always been their favourite red rag.

According to the BBC, their latest sculpture, currently on show at Blackpool's Grundy Art Gallery, has managed to scandalize both the Board of Deputies of British Jews, and local residents, who are usually hard to shock.

The controversial piece represents Adolf Hitler, his arm raised in a Sieg Heil salute. It is one of the ornaments of Doug Fishbone & Friends Adventureland Golf, and emits a shout of "no, no, no" each time a ball goes through it. 

Michael Samuels, from the Board of Deputies of British Jews, is said to have described the Chapman Brothers' work has having "absolutely no artistic value whatsoever."  "He's not somebody that you would make a joke of - Hitler was responsible for the murders of many millions of people," he added. UK art website Artlyst reported that members of the public had called for the piece's removal from the exhibition.  

When contacted by ARTINFO UK, Grundy Art Gallery denied having heard such complaints. "Since the exhibition opened on Saturday we've had a really positive response and lots of people trying out the adventure golf course," Cllr Graham Cain, Cabinet Member for Tourism and Culture, said in a statement. "Adventureland Golf won't appeal to everyone and we understand and respect that."

Doug Fishbone & Friends Adventureland Golf is inspired by Blackpool's tradition of popular entertainment. The ironic mini golf course also features Fishbone's recreation of the toppling of Saddam Hussein's monumental statue in Baghdad in 2003, a "builder's bum" by Gary Webb, a desert island by Brian Griffiths, and a boarded-up library referencing the coalition government's cuts in the cultural sector, courtesy of Jonathan Allen.

When asked about the Chapman Brothers' contribution to the show, Grundy Art Gallery curator Stuart Tulloch said the piece was a chance to "ridicule" Hitler.

"Doug Fishbone & Friends Adventureland Golf," August 11 – October 6, 2012, Grundy Art Gallery, Blackpool