A splattering of machine parts, oil, flesh and blood rips apart in front of the Sydney Opera House. Christ looks on under the flags of Britain, the United States and Israel. The words Portrait of an Exploding Terrorist are printed beneath the image. This is art as protest, oils and canvas as activism. And it was painted by the nephew of the man most expect to become Australia's 26th Prime Minister.
Van Thanh Rudd is a Melbourne artist who removes his art from the confines of the gallery and carries it into the public space. Last weekend, Rudd took another work, the 165cm x 150cm Painting of an Extremist, into the public spaces of Canberra -- an appropriate venue given the election is less than a week away.