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Should Artists have Total Freedom of Expression

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Introduction

Should Artists have Total Freedom of Expression? Laws about obscenity, libel, slander and official secrets restrict freedom of expression, yet society's understanding of what is offensive often needs to be clarified by the courts. Personal freedom requires the exercise of judgement even if law limits it. Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights states, "Everyone has the right to freedom of expression. This right shall include freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers" and " The exercise of these freedoms may be subject to such ...restrictions or penalties as are prescribed by law...for the protection of the health or morals...or reputation or rights of others...." Morally this issue raises several questions: Should artists have total freedom of expression? If they should, should they use it? What, if any, self-imposed restrictions should there be? ...read more.

Middle

and dozens of McDonalds and Burger Kings to let their voice sing out on behalf of the animal carcasses in the show. Concern over this particular right-wing segment of society, who contribute to the abortion debate with firearms and bombs and express their opinion of homosexuals by beating them to death and hanging them on fences, caused the museum to station armed guards and airport metal detectors at the entrance, the detectors so sensitive that they found metal on me that security at JFK airport let slide just the week before. People, New Yorkers even more scared of being jarred out of their little comfort zone, more scared of a piece of canvas, than they are of a dictatorial government making sweeping decisions over what they can and cannot see." Below is some of the work at the Sensation's exhibition. You may decide it is art, you may decide it is not. ...read more.

Conclusion

Is Marcus Harvey pushing the barrier? Is his freedom to express gone too far? Great Deeds Against the Dead, by Jake and Dinos Chapman This collaborative team present this piece, a life-sized tribute to the piece from 19th Century master Goya's etching of the same name. But just as Goya strove to portray the horrors of war and man's inhumanity towards man, the brothers Chapman take it a step further, working with mannequins as a medium; the victims of the piece, although posed perfectly to mimic the original work, are plastic and fake and their hair and moustaches are bad nylon wigs. Even as it makes a comment on the way we cheapen the life of our fellow man, it's still a haunting piece. Do these artists have the right to express their ideas and thoughts in this way? Do these pieces of work offend and challenge society? Is the judgement we make 'it is morally wrong' just a disguised version of the expression 'I don't like it?' http://www.drowningcreekstudio.com/06_manifesto/16_sensations/sensations.html ...read more.

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