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Launch of Brainstorming Report: EU Voices of Culture

2 August 2021

Freemuse co-drafted a chapter on artistic freedom and freedom of expression for the report. 

The Voices of Culture platform organised a two-day brainstorming session on 27-28 April 2021 on the ‘Status and Working Conditions for Artists, Cultural and Creative Professionals’. The brainstorming session included representatives from the cultural and creative sectors, including professional organisations, cultural institutions, non-governmental organisations, European networks, foundations and private organisations with relevant expertise. The exchanges during the brainstorming session were followed by the drafting of the ‘Brainstorming Report by the participants.   

The report addresses various challenges faced by artists and cultural actors, touching upon the financial and legal status of artists, mobility of artists, intellectual property rights as well as artistic freedom. Freemuse co-drafted chapter 5 of the report, ‘Artistic Freedom and Freedom of Expression: Diversity and Inclusion, Threats to Artistic Freedom, Measures and Regulations’.  

The chapter provides an overview of the state of artistic freedom in Europe, addressing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on artists and cultural actors across the continent. Specifically, the chapter details the challenges posed through the lack of democratic access to public spaces for artistic expression, the absence of transparency and accountability mechanisms in artist remuneration and funding processes, as well as the censorship of artists with politically dissenting or oppositional views. The particular limitations on the audio-visual sector are also outlined. 

The recommendations at the EU level propose the establishment of national initiatives by the EU in order to address specific contexts and the strengthening of the role played by international organisations working in the field. At the national/local level, Freemuse highlights the importance of public access to the arts, transparency and accountability in the remuneration process, legal assistance for artists as well as mechanisms to ensure diversity in organisations working in the sector.  

Read the report here. 

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