Artists & cultural professionals
Artists and cultural professionals use creative means to promote just and peaceful societies, artistic freedom and open dialogue with the public through art. They can use various mediums, and may be writers, painters, visual or performance artists, musicians, filmmakers, and photographers. This is a non-exhaustive list of individuals working towards the same goal: creating positive change in their societies through art.
Artists are crucial to the human rights movement as they are able to powerfully affect change through relatable visual and performative methods. In order to be able to inspire change, artists must be able to have their voices and messages heard and seen. Artists are able to share their messages with people from all walks of life, ages, backgrounds regardless of whether or not they are active in human rights movements. Their reach is broad and therefore, their work vital to human rights movements.
Artists can face various threats and challenges due to their human rights work, including censorship, detention, legal prosecution or imprisonment, harassment, attacks to themselves and their work places, fines and even travel bans in countries where their art is considered illegal.
Although the creative responses of artists are vital to uncovering human rights violations all over the world, their role as human rights defenders is often overlooked. This has often resulted in a lack of or insufficient protection when they face risks from powerful actors due to the nature of the messages their work aims to share with the public.
Shelter City stands side by side with artists and cultural professionals.