Safe havens for artists at risk – a Nordic perspective

21 November 2013

Impossible Music Session in Stockholm

On 10-11 November 2013, the Swedish Arts Council organised a Nordic Expert Meeting about Artistic Freedom of Speech to consolidate the growing movement to provide safe havens for censored and oppressed cultural workers. Several workshops demonstrated the complexity of organising safe havens for artists. During the meeting two cities, Stockholm and …

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Denmark: Hippie book author accuses Facebook of hypocrisy

20 November 2013

A debate about online freedom of speech was held in Copenhagen on 14 November 2013, following the decision by Apple to not carry a Danish book about 1970s hippie culture because it contained nudity. Facebook also threatened to ban its author, Peter Øvig Knudsen, after he posted content from the book that …

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Denmark: Artist convicted of racism in ‘artistic manifesto’

20 September 2013

Danish-Iranian artist Firoozeh Bazrafkan was handed a US$ 1,000 fine on 16 September 2013 when the Western High Court in Denmark found her guilty of racism. She says Iranian secret police discuss wanting to kill her because she is an apostate. She had been charged by Aarhus Police of violating …

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Denmark: Workshops with rappers from Gaza, film from Turkey

28 February 2013

The Danish school assistance organisation Skoletjenesten has linked up with the organisation Rapolitics and a number of ‘global high schools’ and gymnasiums to arrange for two Palestinian rappers to travel throughout the country in the days right before and after Music Freedom Day to give workshops and performances. So far …

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Denmark: Apple’s puritanical censorship creates a movement

11 February 2013

“An international protest movement is under way that has had enough of Apple’s new-puritamism and negative cultural domination,” wrote journalist Morten Løkkegaard in Politiken on 8 February 2013. After a second Danish author, Michael Næsted Nielsen, was informed by Apple that his new book, ‘Slaven’ (‘The Slave’) is going to …

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Denmark: Row over Muslim satire

17 January 2013

“Every muslim must know that there are consequences if you make fun of Islam,” says Abu Zakaria and calls for a boycott of the new Danish satire-series entitled ‘Det Slører Stadig’, broadcasted by the public service channel DR2. In the tv-programme, four young women with immigrant background from Iran, Jordan …

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Denmark: Theatrical performance about artistic freedom of expression

11 January 2013

On 18 January 2013, a theatrical performance which focuses on the artistic freedom of expression versus artistic silence premieres at Theatre Grob in Copenhagen, Denmark. Inspired by the reality and the whole matter surrounding the imprisonment of members of Pussy Riot in Russia, the show, entitled ‘Stalin’s Boots’, focuses on …

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Denmark: Art happening or hate speech?

18 December 2012

Limits of free expression in the arts are currently being discussed and tested in court in Denmark. In a trial on 13 December 2012, the prosecutor claimed the artist Firoozeh Bazrafkan has violated the Danish “racism article” against hate speech, while the artist claimed it was an art happening and …

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Denmark: Row over ban of theatre group’s burning flag

27 November 2012

This photograph of a naked woman and a burning Danish flag was supposed to have been promoting a new production by the theatre group Danskdansk (‘Danishdanish’) in the capital of Copenhagen. But the advertisement agency Clear Channel did not want to see it displayed on the back of 18 Copenhagen …

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