Blackfriars Priory School Principal Explains How Awkward Covered Statue Was Bungled
By Erin Jones
November 22, 2017
AN Adelaide Catholic school has been forced to cover and cordon off a new religious statue after raising eyebrows because of its unfortunate design.
The statue of St Martin de Porres — not St Dominic as originally believed — was unveiled by Blackfriars Priory School, at Prospect, late last week.
The sculpture showed St Martin de Porres handing a young boy a loaf of bread, which appears to have emerged from his cloak.
But the sculpture’s unintentionally provocative design has had unforeseen consequences and created a flurry of activity on social media, prompting the school to take swift action.
The Advertiser understands the school was forced to cover the statue with a black cloth after students took photos of it on Friday and by this week, it had been cordoned off.
|The covered-up statue, which was later cordoned off completely.|
Principal Simon Cobiac released a statement on Facebook saying the sculpture was designed in Vietnam by the same sculptor used to create another statue in the school.
“The two-dimensional concept plans for the statue were viewed and approved by the executive team in May but upon arrival the three-dimensional statue was deemed by the executive to be potentially suggestive,” he wrote.
“As a consequence, the statue was immediately covered and a local sculptor has been commissioned to re-design it.
“The school apologises for any concerns and publicity generated by this matter and is taking action to substantially alter the statue.”
Pictures of the statue have been shared on social media on the ShitAdelaide Instagram page, attracting more than 1500 likes and more than 90 comments.
One Instagram user wrote: “Like who the hell designed, approved and erected it and no one thought about it?”
Other comments included: “surely this can’t be real” and “can’t believe this happened”.
The controversy follows the school making headlines last week for one of its Year 12 students being behind a hoax letter telling his peers they would have to resit their biology exam.
The letter, circulated on Facebook with a SACE Board letterhead, falsely claimed that there had been a “significant breach in the integrity” of the exam sat by 3645 students across the state.
Mr Cobiac said at the time it was “very much out of character” for the student.