In America, artists, arts leaders and arts advocates face many challenges in funding the arts. We think funding is important for many reasons, but especially because "Everyone has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts..." That's Article 27 from the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
In China, the burden for arts leaders, advocates and artists is far greater than limited funding and access to the arts. The challenges involve government-constructed roadblocks designed to inhibit artistic expression and arts programming.
Earlier this week Chinese dissident and artist Ai Weiwei released a Gangnam-style video in a rather humorous attempt to raise awareness about ongoing government censorship of the arts in China. Here are all the details from a report in the New York Times.
“Our happiness is constantly being taken away from us, our homes demolished, we are always controlled, passports can be taken away from us, and all these can affect our happiness,” the artist said. “However, every morning we have the opportunity to give others something to laugh about. Laughter is important.”