15.12.2023, 16 Uhr

In defence of artistic freedom

The political and cultural climate is coming to a head. The current discussions about artistic freedom and so-called cancel culture are dangerous. Public discourse is increasingly characterised by an inadmissible mixing of topics and tendentious claims. This confusion has led to violations of civil liberties that are unacceptable for a democratic nation.

The Akademie der Künste represents the freedom and demands of art in state and society in accordance with the law and its statutes. Based on this obligation, it is important to defend freedom of art and freedom of opinion as the highest legal rights protected by the German constitution in a democracy. They have been painstakingly achieved in a long civilising process.

The freedom of art is fully responsible for this. It operates within the framework of the principles of our constitution: “No person shall be favoured or disfavoured because of sex, parentage, race, language, homeland and origin, faith, or religious or political opinions.” (Article 3 of the Basic Law of the Federal Republic of Germany)
As long as it does not contradict these principles, everyone has the right to freely express and disseminate their opinions in speech, writing and images.

The Akademie der Künste speaks out against any kind of judgement of artists and against anticipatory red lines based on political statements. The nature and freedom of art are threatened when attempts are made to instrumentalise it. Artistic freedom must always take precedence over an unobjective debate.

Jeanine Meerapfel
President of the Akademie der Künste