"Artistic expression is under threat worldwide. Authoritarian governments jail cartoonists for sedition, lock up poets and painters for blasphemy, prosecute rappers for insulting the state, and illegally censor filmmakers."
After March's trip to UNESCO I continue in my role on the board of directors with Cartoonists Rights Network International to travel and represent the organisation at meetings focused on challenges to artists' rights.
Today I'll be participating in a gathering in Los Angeles called for by David Kaye, United Nations Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Opinion and Expression and launching "a new effort to revive the protections guaranteed to artistic expression in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights [...] a workshop to examine the definitions, standards, and human rights law pertaining to artistic freedom of expression, identify the key threats, and collect stories of artists’ experiences on the ground. [...] The workshop will bring together 25 international experts, including artists, lawyers, activists, policymakers and academics in order to develop a long-term agenda to promote freedom of artistic expression around the world."
I'm grateful to Prof. Kaye for his gracious and most welcome invitation; his team at the University of California, Irvine School of Law for their assistance in handling the logistics of the event; and our generous hosts at the Artistic Freedom Center.