A touring artwork from a critically-acclaimed installation was stopped from arriving in the Market Square over purdah rules.
‘Aftermath Dislocation Principle Riot’ - which had been part of the Weston-super-Mare installation ‘Dismaland’ by street artist Banksy - was due to come to the Market Square yesterday.
But the tour manager was forced to exhibit the work - by former KLF musician Jimmy Cauty - in the car park of the Super Sausage cafe in St Andrew’s Road after council officials intervened at the weekend. The art - which is inside a 40ft shipping conatiner - shows a dystopian model village where only the police and media have survived a riot or civil catastrophe.
Although the official literature accompanying the work makes a point of saying the riot depicted happened for an unspecified reason, council officials claimed it showed an ‘election riot’.
A Northampton Borough Council spokeswoman said: “We were approached at the end of last week and asked if we would play to host the display of artwork by Jimmy Cauty on the Market Square.
“This was very short notice but ultimately we decided not to allow the display but because of the way the artwork depicts an election riot which could be misinterpreted in the pre-referendum purdah period,
“The National Purdah rules state that councils must ensure during the pre-election period that communications are appropriate, objective and are not controversial in nature; therefore on this occasion we were unable to authorise the display onto council property as it could be misinterpreted as politically controversial.”