Artists at Risk Connection and Cubalex have announced a white paper on the rise of repression against in Cuba in 2018. Art Under Pressure: Decree 349 Restricts Creative Freedom in Cuba (31 pages, available in English and Spanish) examines the government’s efforts to institutionalize and expand limits on creative expression. Decree 349 was announced in July 10, 2018, and went into effect on December 7 of the same year despite the many concerns expressed by artists and activists in Cuba and abroad. The paper gives examples and experiences with the Decree from independent artists, analyzes aspects and terminology, and takes a look to the history of censorship in Cuba including legal conflicts conflict with the country’s international treaty commitments and obligations.
The EU will simplify procedures for requesting and issuing short-stay visas and will use the visa policy to encourage non-EU countries to cooperate on migration. On January 29th Parliament and Council negotiators informally agreed on a new EU Visa Code, establishing the procedures and conditions for issuing visas for short periods (up to 90 days in any 180-day period). The visa fee will rise from 60 to 80€, with some exceptions and reductions (children, students). Applications could be submitted earlier than now – between six months and 15 days ahead of the trip. Additional facilities are planned for well-known artists and high performance athletes touring in the EU, as well as multiple entry visas for frequent travelers.
The informal deal will now be put to vote in the Civil Liberties Committee. It will also need to be confirmed by the plenary before formal adoption by the Council of Ministers. The changes will be applicable six months after the text is published in the Official Journal of the EU.
Because of the “anti-Iranian politics of Poland” the management of the Dramatic Arts Center canceled the two invited Polish performances “Silence” and “Bad City” for this year’s 37th Fajir Festival (February 11-23).
Source: Iran Theatre
The 29th annual report summarizes key human rights issues in more than 100 countries and territories worldwide, drawing on events from late 2017 through November 2018.
The 674-page book reflects extensive investigative and advocacy work that Human Rights Watch staff undertook in 2018, usually in close partnership with human rights activists and groups in the country in question. All countries are listed separate, except collected listed United Arab Emirates and European Union. The report can be downloaded for free or searched by country at the website.
The premiere of the new creation Histoire(s) du Théâtre II by the Congolese choreographer/director Faustin Linyekula at the NTGent (Belgium), scheduled for February 21, has been canceled. Despite all efforts, the European borders remained closed for three Congolese dancers. Together with directors of the festivals and theatres which were booked for the upcoming tour, Faustin Linyekula (photo) and Milo Rau, artistic director NT Gent, have published an open letter: “Making international artistic cooperation impossible. Is this what we want?”
Darko Lukić is a theatre scholar, playwright and novelist. He hold the keynote on recent cases in Eastern Europe at the public symposium “The Challenges of Artistic Freedom” at the Maribor Festival, on October 23, 2018, organised by ACAR with the ITI centres of Slovenia and Germany.
You may read “Degenerate Art” 81 Years after Munich – Eastern European contemporary examples here.