A row has developed between a Fine Gael TD and Cork Film Centre over the leaflets which were sent to politicians throughout the city and county criticising Arts Council funding cuts.
Deputy Tom Barry said he had no problem with the organisation highlighting funding cuts, but it shouldn’t have used such an image following recent atrocities in Iraq. He said the picture being used is in extremely bad taste considering the recent beheadings by ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) in Iraq of American journalists Steven Sotloff and James Foley.
ISIL have also sent out a chilling warning that a British hostage would be the next to die.
“There are a hundred ways to make a point but this is too insensitive. They should withdraw the document.
“It’s only a matter of time before an Irish aid worker gets caught up in this. I don’t know if they want to use shock value to highlight their case, but if that’s the case then they don’t deserve funding. I felt sick when I saw it,” Mr Barry said.
Cork Film Centre manager Chris Hurley said that around 100 leaflets were sent out to local politicians criticising a €70,000 cut in its funding.
He said he wouldn’t have equated the picture with the ISIL beheadings.
Mr Hurley said he couldn’t withdraw the leaflets and they were printed before the brutal killings were posted on the internet by ISIL.
He said the image was based on an award-winning animation called ‘Nose’ which the Cork Film Centre, which is based at the Gunpowder Mills in Ballincollig, helped to produce alongside the Arts Council and Irish Film Board.
Mr Hurley said that the funding cut, which comes into effect at the end of this month, will mean the loss of his only two full-time staff.
“It will also have a significant impact on people (from the area) making films.
“The only reason funding was cut was because there are similar bodies in Dublin and Galway. But we cater for a lot more people working in video art,” Mr Hurley said.