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
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)

(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."

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Showing 3 of 43 comments
justreading1
Mar 26, 2013 11:54 AM CDT
Art is like beauty. What one person says is pretty, another says the same item is ugly. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As a weekend Bible School Teacher, all kids are not on the same page. Some may know of the differences of the human body, but others are not at that level of maturity yet. Therefore, I believe she was within her right to ask to have it removed. Personally, if I knew it was there prior to going, I would not attend. Viewing an item with two individuals carved into a sex act is not what I consider art. Remember, Art is in the eye of the beholder!
EricShultz
Mar 25, 2013 9:43 PM CDT
this shrew needs to get a fucking life...if you don't like the art, don't look at it...but trying to prevent other people from looking at it is unnecessary...fucking conservatives...
clmsman
Mar 25, 2013 4:51 PM CDT
Tusk porn, have to check that out. People will carve anything of a whale tooth out of boardom being at sea for months.