“Palayain ang Sining” on Freedom of Expression, Censorship and the case of “kulo”

This is the statement of “Palayain ang Sining”

The whole issue surrounding the Kulo Exhibit at the CCP and particularly that of Mideo Cruz’s Poleteismo , has gotten out of hand, to say the least. But focusing on our attention and ire on one person has made us overlook the larger underlying issue, which affects not only Mideo Cruz but all of us as creators of art and as members of the viewing public: that of censorship and repression.

The bishops and religious lay leaders pushing for the closure of the exhibit are demanding not only that we persecute one person’s creative expression, but that we hinder any other creative expressions whose concept and presented ideologies they do not agree with. To allow the exhibit’s closure based on such would set a precedent for all other exhibitions as follow.

Threats of filing legal charges have been made against the CCP and has cited Article 201 of the revised penal code. Yet this law in contrary to Article 3 section 4 of the Philippine constitution, stating that “no law shall be passed abridging the freedom of speech, expression , or of the press or the right of the people peacably to assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances.”

Palayain ang sining is direct in what it stands for : The fight for freedom in our creative expression; the fight against censorship and repression.

We call on all artists from all fields -visual arts, cinema, theater, dance, music, — to unite against this attempt to censor and control what are shown to the public.

We call on members of the press to likewise uphold our basic constitutional rights to freedom of speech, of expression and of the press.

We call on the CCP to re-open the exhibition in the spirit of free flow of ideas and cultural expressions. In the spirit of the long tradition of progressive artists who have fought for freedom of expression and against censorship.

Freedoms that we enjoy today because of a long history of struggle.

Palayain ang Sining does not merely support Mideo Cruz. We support the fight against censorshop and against attacks on our basic right to freedom of expression.

Twitter reactions on censorship and Mideo Cruz.