I am thrilled to be part of the team as a Lead Expert Advisor / Curator and Scientific Coordinator for the digital exhibition Free to Create — Create to be Free at the Steering Committee for Culture, Heritage and Landscape (CDCPP) at the Council of Europe!
The Council of Europe is proud to present its first digital exhibition “Free to Create – Create to be Free”. It is initiated, developed and curated in consultation with the Steering Committee for Culture, Heritage and Landscape (CDCPP) to mark the 70th anniversary of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).
The exhibition is a reply also to the Secretary General’s of the Council of Europe has identified in her 2021 Report on the State of Democracy, Human Rights and the Rule of Law, where she states that “Freedom of expression is facing growing pressure.”
Already in November 2020 the CDCPP launched a Manifesto on the Freedom of Expression of Arts and Culture in the Digital Era. The Secretary General of the Council of Europe highlighted the role of artists in particular: She endorsed the Manifesto on the Freedom of Expression and stated, that
“More and more artists, experts and cultural professionals who hint at problems, spell out uncomfortable truths, make the unseen visible are subject to pressure, censorship, intimidation and harassment. The Manifesto draws attention to these risks and sends a clear political signal to protect openness and creativity, which are essential ingredients of our democracies.”Secretary General of the Council of Europe
The exhibition Free to Create — Create to be Free follows the launch of the Manifesto: Member states of the Council of Europe are invited to provide up to two artworks referring to the Manifesto and the overall topic of artistic freedom.
The digital exhibition received its first art works in May 2021. It allows member states to display their works of art reflecting the essential role of artistic freedom in a democratic society and thereby sustainably grow into a living archive, showcasing the status of artistic freedom in Europe in the 21st century.
The Deputy Secretary General, Björn Berge stated in his speech addressing the Committee of Ministers in December 2021, that
“Artists, artistic mobility and artistic freedom are strategic resources for society, able to help overcome fragmentation and addressing today’s global challenges. The digital exhibition “Free to Create – Create to be Free” makes this concrete, visible, and broadly accessible.”Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Mr Björn Berge
Featured Council of Europe Member States comprise at this time: Azerbaijan, Germany, Lithuania, Poland, Serbia
Featured artists are: Faig Ahmed (AZ), Tewa Barnosa (DE), Alexandar Crnogorac (SR), Mariela Cvetic (SR), Rashad Mehdijev (AZ), Leszek Sobocki (PL), Anastasia Sosunova (LT), Nasan Tur (DE)
Further information: https://freetocreate.art/about
Matjaz GRUDEN: Director of Democratic Participation, Council of Europe
Kathrin MERKLE (Head, Culture and Cultural Heritage Division, CDCPP Secretary): Kathrin.MERKLE@coe.int
Dr. Katalin KRASZNAHORKAI (Lead Expert Advisor/Scientific Coordinator and Curator): firstname.lastname@example.org
Ivana HRDAS, (Project Manager, Culture and Cultural Heritage Division): Ivana.HRDAS@coe.int
DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT: Olivia Solis and Christo Buschek (Boxy Box Collective)