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May 2019: Spotlight – detained performers and art censorship

31 May 2019

 

STATEMENT

 

On 15 and 19 April 2019, members of the Myanmar thangyat troupe–a satirical poetry group–Daung Doh Myo Sat (Peacock Generation) were arrested for wearing military costumes in a performance they later live-streamed on Facebook. A further two members were later arrested

Freemuse Executive Director Dr Srirak Plipat said, “The imprisoned members of Peacock Generation are entitled to the right to exercise their art as a vehicle for expression–including criticising authorial powers and holding them to account. We call on the Myanmar authorities and the Mayangone Township Court to release the five members and drop all current charges.”

This use of legislation to silence artists and artistic expression deeply impacts the human rights of those in Myanmar and has the potential to leave long-term damage on the state of culture, art and artistic expression in the country. 

Read the full statement here

NEWS

Cancel culture as a threat to artistic freedom in the USA

'Silent Sam' statue destroyed
Image: ‘Silent Sam’ statue / Facebook

 

University campuses in the USA have been host to the emerging trend of removing artworks as part of the ‘cancel culture’ movement. Works are increasingly being censored that depict ‘cancelled’ historical figures or imagery at both administrative and student discretion.

Read more here.

In Iran, dancing children were deemed ‘disturbing’

Iranian Education Minister has deemed videos of schoolchildren dancing as “disturbing” and part of the greater plot to undermine the Islamic Republic.
Image: Screenshot from a video of dancing girls / Sasy Mankan Instagram

 

Iranian Education Minister Mohammad Bathaei has deemed videos of schoolchildren dancing as “disturbing” and part of the greater plot to undermine the Islamic Republic. Children were dancing to the pop song by Sasy Mankan.

Read more here.

Protesters go bananas over artwork in Poland

Image: Polish protestor on 29 April / Buzzfeed World News on Instagram

 

The removal of two video installations at the National Museum in Warsaw has led to a series of banana-eating protests across Poland. As a result of the protests and online backlash, the installations were temporarily reinstated and again removed on 6 May. 

Read more here.

FREEMUSE EVENTS

At Home Everywhere
29-31 May 2019

During the At Home Everywhere conference, Freemuse Executive Director Dr Srirak Plipat will speak about freedom of artistic expression in Europe.
Image: ICORN / icorn.org

 

The meeting brought together 300 experts from around the world to discuss what it means to be at home in today’s world.

Read more here

Swedish Performing Arts Biennial
14-19 May 2019

Swedish Performing Arts Biennial
Swedish Performing Arts Biennial / scensverige.se

 

The event showcased Swedish performance art in many forms: including theatre, dance and artistic expression.

Read more here.

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