Two prominent art curators in Moscow, Yury Samodurov and Andrei Yerofeyev, are facing three years in prison for showing art that insulted the Russian Orthodox Church. It is the latest example of blasphemy prosecutions, a growing trend in the West and industrialized nations.
Despite an international outcry, Russian prosecutors held a 14-month trial and are demanding three years in prison for the men. It is a direct attack on free speech and the rights of artists in Russia. Ironically, the exhibit was shown at the Sakharov Museum, named after human rights leader and physicist Andrei Sakharov,
The exhibit “Forbidden Art” showed several paintings with images of Jesus Christ, including one as Mickey Mouse and another on the Order of Lenin medal.
Samodurov was previously convicted of inciting religious hatred for an exhibit in 2003 called “Caution: Religion!”
It is yet another example of the slide of Russia back into repressive policies and unchecked government authority.