A project impulsed by CoE to promote the importance of Freedom of artistic expression
“A digital #exhibition organised by the Council of Europe featuring works of art from participating States to promote the importance of freedom of artistic expression”Jaroslav Andel, 2019
Report on The Freedom of Artistic Expression
Prepared for the Council of Europe (and its Steering Committee for culture, heritage and landscape (CDCPP)) by Sara Whyatt, on the challenges that European artists and cultural workers face in the practice of their right to freedom of artistic expression. These range from laws that curtail creative freedom, attacks from non-governmental groups and online threats to the “under-the-radar” pressures that contribute to self-censorship. Artistic freedom is a core human right requiring protection and it has worsened recently under multiple challenges – political extremism, economic collapse, a global pandemic, threats from digitisation, an emerging environmental catastrophe, and the return of war within Europe – all crises with major impacts on human rights across society. This comprehensive overview reflects the work carried out by the Council of Europe, other international intergovernmental organisations promoting freedom of expression and human rights, and non-governmental, civil society and cultural organisations concerned with artists’ and cultural rights, as well as the experiences and perspectives of artists. It concludes with recommendations on what can be done to protect artistic freedom, by international institutions and by the cultural sector and artists themselves.