A coalition of 8 civil society organizations including Open Net denounced Jeonju Gender Equity, an organization run by the city of Jeonju, for its censorship of artists’ ideas and infringement of the freedom of conscience protected by Article 19 of the Korean Constitution.
This July, three artists were forced to drop out from showing their works of art at an art exhibit hosted by Jeongju Gender Equity after the organization became aware of the artists’ beliefs on sex work – namely that the artists would not condemn it.
One artist was excluded from the exhibit for having introduced herself as ‘a sex industry worker’. Another artist was excluded for expressing that they do not oppose the categorization of those working in the sex industry as ‘workers’, in response to a Jeonju Gender Equity official’s comments that those in the sex industry should not be referred to as ‘sex workers’. A third artist was excluded for expressing that they concur with the second artist.
The civil societies condemn Jeonju Gender Equity’s decision to kick out three artists from the art exhibit and request that it 1. Stops the censorship of artists’ conscience 2. Publicly apologize to the three artists, and 3. Publicly promise to stop its practice of censoring artists’ conscience and ensure artists’ right to free speech in the future.
*This is a partial translation of Open Net’s original statement in Korean. You can find the full Korean version here. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.