So here’s the now infamous non-cover for Kanye West’s forthcoming album, “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy,” which normally I wouldn’t consider newsworthy as it’s clearly just Kanye hyping the release, but it does raise a good question: when an artist says his or her work has been banned, how official does the “ban” have to be? If a corporation that controls the artist’s work refuses to release or exhibit it, is that a ban, or does a ban have to be from government with criminal penalties attached?
For those of you unaware, Kanye has been trying to whip up interest in his album by tweeting about the cover. A couple of sample Kanye tweets:
“Banned in the USA!!! They don’t want me chilling on the couch with my phoenix! http://twitpic.com/2ykxjk”
“So Nirvana can have a naked human being on they cover but I can’t have a PAINTING of a monster with no arms and a polka dot tail and wings.”
“In the ’70s album covers had actual nudity… It’s so funny that people forget that… Everything has been so commercialized now.”