EU Filmmakers welcome initiative to bring Artistic Freedom in focus at EU-level
Today, the event “Media and artistic freedom under attack – Europe has to act” organized by the S&D Group in the EU Parliament brought much-needed focus on a worrisome trend of undemocratic interference in the media and cultural sectors in Europe.
As an organization representing filmmakers at European level and advocating for their cultural, creative and economic interests at national and European level, FERA welcomes this initiative which sheds light on the absolute need to ensure creators’ artistic freedom in 21st century Europe, without which European filmmakers’ unique yet diverse creative voices would cease to exist.
Attacks on filmmakers’ artistic freedom range from individual cases to situations where censorship affects entire local audiovisual ecosystems. FERA has observed an upward trend in both types of cases challenging local creative communities: such a threat to the EU cultural diversity can no longer be ignored.
Director, FERA Chair and the Chair of Slovenian Federation of Filmmakers’ Guilds Klemen Dvornik said during the event: “Freedom of expression is essential for a fearless observation of the world and for its truthful translation into artistic work. That’s why cultural funding systems should not be affected by political changes – yet in Slovenia, public funding for the audiovisual sector remains unstable with no sustainable solution in sight.”
Freedom of artistic expression requires artists and the cultural and creative sectors at large to be independent and free of any governmental censorship, political interference or pressures from non-state actors. In the audiovisual sector, this entails autonomy from political authorities’ influence and independence of expertise from ideology when assessing or commissioning projects.
We call on the European Union to acknowledge the growing pressure on our common EU democratic standards in the field of media and artistic freedom by setting up a formal monitoring framework to document related infringements, in order to inform and assess concrete EU-level action in the near future.
Below you can find a list of artistic freedom cases that FERA has worked on: