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Dirty Books: Art Times sits down with Conrad Botes and Anton Kannemeyer

In the August 2020 edition of Art Times, Conrad Botes and Anton Kannemeyer take a moment to talk about their new books, a fresh wave of censorship and the hypocrisy of the middle class. Read the full interview here.

Towards the end of 2019, artists Conrad Botes and Anton Kannemeyer, longtime friends and collaborators on the iconic, satirical Bitterkomix series, found themselves with a familiar problem – censorship. This time it was Conrad’s new book The Erotic Drawings of Conrad Botes and the re-print of Anton’s The Erotic Drawings of Anton Kannemeyer that earned the ire of would-be censors. Featuring drawings they have collated over the course of their careers, in the two books the duo probe and finger our inherent hypocrisy around sex, religion, race, pornography, misogyny, art and freedom of speech.

When your art creates a spaghetti junction of taboo topics most people abhor, it’s inevitable that someone will take issue.  



"A certain image was considered blasphemous, and they demanded that it be removed from the book before they would continue. I discussed it with Anton and against our better judgement we decided to replace the image. A week later another image was deemed unacceptable by the print staff and again they demanded we remove it. This time we fought back and threatened them with legal action."

"I think the major aspect that makes people uncomfortable or ‘afraid’ is the fact that the work is not erotic. The work is not intended to titillate. We use explicit imagery in order to confront people with taboos and to undermine middle class values." - Conrad Botes

Read the rest of the interview in Art Times here.

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