Angry Mom Goes After 'Whale Bone Porn'

But museum refuses to take down naughty 'scrimshaw'

By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff

Posted Mar 24, 2013 8:17 AM CDT

(Newser) – A school teacher has launched a personal campaign against what she calls "whale bone porn"—etchings of naughty acts on whale teeth and bone on display at a Vancouver museum, the National Post reports. The Vancouver Maritime Museum has "a new exhibit called Scrimshaw which features numerous images of inappropriate nature (oral sex, sex, nudity, male anatomy etc.) on tusks," writes Ann Pimentel on Tripadvisor. "As a mother and a teacher I was extremely disturbed and believe these pieces of ‘art’ should be removed."

But her campaign—which she took to the Vancouver Sun and Yelp—has only aroused greater interest in the scrimshaw, a 19-century art form practiced by lonely whalers in the South Pacific. They vented their frustrations by using hand tools to engrave tobacco juice on whale leftovers. The museum's curator says she won't remove the display, but admits there are raunchier scrimshaw works in the basement that she'll never bring up—because they depict a candlestick being used in what she politely calls "the act."

An undated photo released by Bonham's Auction House Wednesday March 25, 2009 of a whale tooth memento of Charles Darwin's famous expedition to the Galapagos Islands which will be put up for sale this autumn.
An undated photo released by Bonham's Auction House Wednesday March 25, 2009 of a whale tooth memento of Charles Darwin's famous expedition to the Galapagos Islands which will be put up for sale this...   (AP Photo/HO Bonhams)
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