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Artists arrested during exhibition opening (Belgrade, Serbia)

October 21, 2017

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After an artistic performance in front of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Belgrade in the frame of The Salon of the Unbribable, Vladan Jeremić, member of ArtLeaks, was arrested.

Right now, the Salon of the Unbribables is organizing a series of events that aim to break with the habit of public silence about the state of culture and art in Serbia.

The first action was staged on October 20, on the occasion of the re-opening of Belgrade’s Museum of Contemporary art that has been closed to the public for the last ten years, due to unsuccessful reconstruction.

The visitors were invited to put on a paper mask resembling the portrait of Serbia’s president and to share flyers with sandwiches printed on them to the museum guests. The action reflects the current situation in Serbia, where, although almost everybody is unsatisfied with financing, party pressures, amateurism of the leading cadres and (self)censorship, only a few speak about this is public. Media control and political surveillance have led to a situation, where most of cultural workers, out of personal interests and fear to loose their job or financial support, are silent about the economic and mental repression they are exposed to.

After the performance ended, at the entrance of the museum, security checked the identity of one of the visitors, who still had some props of the performance in her hands. Vladan Jeremić, one of the organizers of the Salon, asked the police what happened. He was checked as well, flyers with the announcement of the Salon of the Unbribables and other props of the performance were confiscated and he was arrested and brought to the police station for interrogation.

Half an hour later, another artist, Uroš Jovanović, was arrested in front of the museum, after he tried to enter the Museum with a big framed photograph of the Serbian president with the statement: Vučić – the best artist.

Vladan Jeremić was released from the station after two hours.

Uroš Jovanović is still arrested.

No repression against artists!

No sellout of art and culture!

Stop corruption!

No fear!

“We don’t want a culture of clones.”

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