A teacher warned me that her class were particularly sensitive to the nudity in the gallery "because they are Muslim". I asked which community they were from and she said mostly Somali, though one was Libyan.

I said that it was my experience that Somali people, though religious, are not fanatical and very well educated. Being young children I would take that into account, but that what I was planning to do should be all right...

When I met them today, one wore a headscarf and there seemed to be just 3 children in the entire class who were Somali - so I really wasn't sure what the issue was...

I had decided to do a workshop in a room of modernist art that uses traditional African carving and masks as inspiration. I thought it was a way of focusing the workshop on an 'appreciation' of an African contribution to European art
(I know it wasn't really like that historically but I decided that Orientalism and the European fetish for the "Primitive" was too complex for 8 year olds).
I then moved to a work by F N Souza of a Crucifixion. He was Indian born but lived and worked in Britain and was huge in his time, though largely forgotten now. Later, a colleague came down and met the kids I had worked with asking them what they had seen. She told me about how confused she was about where I had been and which artists we had seen. She wondered 'what stories I had been telling them' because this guy is Italian. Maybe she was thinking of another work - or maybe she doesn't know who F N Souza was. That gallery has less than 1% of the artwork on display by artists of non-European descent. He is one of the very few and it seems that it is assumed he is European.

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