SYDNEY (AFP) - Hollywood star Cate Blanchett Tuesday joined prominent arts figures in condemning moves to prosecute a renowned photographer on obscenity charges, saying it damaged Australia's cultural reputation. Photographer Bill Henson has been at the centre of a debate about art and pornography after an exhibition of his work, which featured naked 12 and 13-year-old children, was shut down by police last week and 20 works seized. Police have said they are likely to lay charges over the images which Prime Minister Kevin Rudd described as "absolutely revolting." Blanchett, who is joint artistic director of the Sydney Theatre Company with her husband, has signed an open letter in which members of Australia's artistic community express their support for Henson, the Sydney Morning Herald said. All the signatories were part of Rudd's national summit on future directions held in Canberra last month, the paper said on its website. "As members of the Creative Stream of the Australia 2020 Summit, we wish to express our dismay at the police raid on Bill Henson's recent Sydney exhibition, the allegations that he is a child pornographer, and the subsequent reports that he and others may be charged with obscenity," the letter reads. The signatories, which include Museum of Contemporary Art director Elizabeth Ann Macgregor and academic and writer Professor Larissa Behrendt, said the public debate about art and ethics was welcome. But they were clear in their support of Henson, whose work has been shown widely around Australia.