eyephoneography, The Hub, Madrid, SpainEarlier this year in September, Madrid, Spain hosted its first iPhone photography exhibition, eyephoneography #1, at an artist’s collective called The Hub-Madrid. The show was unexpectedly suspended after the photographs were taken down, damaged or destroyed. The show was vandalized.

Few details were released while this was under investigation. Marco La Civita, one of the artists featured in the show and who has close ties to the organizers of eyephoneography, has broken the silence and released a little bit of information about the events of last September. It’s a short read, but it’s an insight into some of the political gamesmanship that occurs in the art world.

Max Oliva, the director of the Hub Madrid, the 21st of last September decided to take down the show without giving any notice to the organizer. The person who physically took down the show did it with no respect whatsoever for the images and ruined them all. 48 images from me, Greg Schmigel, MissPixels, and Sion Fullana treated like trash. It was called a barbaric act, a raptus of madness, a vandalic act.

Click here to read Marco’s full post, “Max Oliva: creative stupidity at the Hub Madrid” on iPhoneblogography.com.

While I appreciate the additional information about the Madrid event, I disagree with Marco’s assertion that Max’s thoughtless and probably criminal acts were an act of creative stupidity. Stupid? Yes. Creative? No.

As the director of a creative co-op, Max Oliva has a duty to, at the very least, respect and protect the works of other artists and exhibits under his tutelage. His actions were akin to the Catering Director of The Prado carelessly removing and destroying classic works by Velásquez because a wedding reception booked down the hall didn’t like old paintings.

I’m glad that as part of the settlement reached the iPhoneographers were paid for their work. Unfortunately, it’s a settlement and not a true sale of the piece. These prints will not hang as part of an afficionado’s collection.

This also raises another disturbing issue. The Hub-Madrid is supposed to be a collective of artists, but it appears that the director of the collective doesn’t always have the artist’s best interests in mind.