Don’t worry, it’s just art.

SAN FRANCISCO / Art Institute halts exhibition showing killing of animals / Workers threatened; video unclear about why deaths filmed

Citing threats of violence by animal rights activists, the San Francisco Art Institute said Saturday that it is canceling a controversial exhibition that included video clips of animals being bludgeoned to death, as well as a public forum it had scheduled to address the controversy.

“We’ve gotten dozens of threatening phone calls that targeted specific staff people with death threats, threats of violence and threats of sexual assaults,” said Art Institute President Chris Bratton. “We remain committed to freedom of speech as fundamental to this institution, but we have to take people’s safety very seriously.”

The exhibit that sparked the controversy was a one-person show by Paris artist Adel Abdessemed called “Don’t Trust Me,” which opened March 1

Apparently the threats were credible enough to cancel the show, but not credible enough for anyone to, say, do time for threatening to kill significant numbers of people for political purposes. (Isn’t there a word for that, starts with T…?)

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