18/03/2010 08:12 GMT | Updated 22/05/2015 06:12 BST

Mother Dresses Her Baby Up As Hitler In The Name Of Art

A Scandinavian artist has caused controversy by dressing her baby up like Hitler and a number of other dictators and taking photographs.

Nina Maria Kleivan also dressed her daughter Faustina up as Joseph Stalin, Benito Mussolini, Saddam Hussein, Ayatollah Khomeini, Chairman Mao, Idi Amin, Augusto Pinochet and Slobodan Milosevic.

She explained to Israeli newspaper Haartetz: "We all have evil within us. Even small children are evil towards each other."

Kleivan apparently started work on the project after giving birth to her daughter 11 years ago. She was hospitalised with serious pelvic joint pain and wheelchair-bound for four months afterwards.

Most women might consider knitting some little bootees for the baby or something. Not Kleivan. She started sewing costumes of dictators and dressing up her daughter.

Her husband thought it was going too far when she made the baby a little swastika armband.

He told her: "I'm aware that you're an artist, but this is wrong."

The artist told Haartetz: "I've pondered that a lot myself: Could I really do this? I agree it's on the verge, especially Hitler, whom I and most others view as the incarnation of evil. He and Stalin were the hardest to do. It hurt."

Kleivan also had some explaining to do to her Jewish aunt. "Most of her family disappeared in the German camps, I felt so bad telling her it was my work, because she didn't know, and was sickened by it," Kleivan says.

However, she says the exhibition "Potency", which has been on display in Sweden, Denmark, Italy and Germany, aims to illustrate that we all begin life the same.

"We all have every opportunity ahead of us," says Kleivan, "To do good, or inexplicable evil."

A doctor specialising in psychopathy told Kleivan he did not believe her daughter would be damaged mentally by being dressed up as these evil dictators.

What do you think? Should a mother use her daughter in such a shocking work of art?

Source: ParentDishUS