Cuban Dissident Artist El Sexto to Premiere Art Show in San Francisco

Cuban Dissident Artist El Sexto to Premiere Art Show in San Francisco

On opening night, El Sexto will enter a replica of the cell in Havana’s maximum-security Combinado del Este prison where he was once jailed, and will remain there for three days on a hunger strike, consuming only water. Guests will be able to view El Sexto through the bars of his cell as he creates art in solidarity with the Cuban people and political prisoners in countries such as China, Russia, Turkey, and Venezuela. Work on display will include art that El Sexto completed while jailed in Cuba. You can RSVP and learn more here.

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Q&A: Danilo Maldonado Machado, the dissident artist called 'El Sexto,' on art and liberty in Cuba

Q&A: Danilo Maldonado Machado, the dissident artist called 'El Sexto,' on art and liberty in Cuba

At the tail end of 2014, Danilo Maldonado Machado, the graffiti artist known as “El Sexto,” was detained by the authorities as he made his way to a public park in Havana to stage a work of protest art. In his vehicle, he was carrying a pair of pigs that he had painted with the names of the Castro brothers — one “Raul,” the other “Fidel.” His plan was to release them and let members of the public catch them and take them home.

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Art In The Era Of Fake News

How should artists respond to the era of fake news? Photographer Alison Jackson is known for her lookalike photographs of public figures in sometimes compromising situations. She discusses why her work is particularly pertinent now.

Australian-Israeli comedian Jeremie Bracka uses humour to explore the ongoing conflict between Israelis and Palestinians. He explains what role he thinks comedy might have in improving dialogue in the region.

The Cuban graffiti artist El Sexto discusses his arrest and detention following the death of Fidel Castro in November, and what he hopes his art can do to encourage freedom of expression in the country.

How might mass immigration to Sweden influence culture? The writer Elin Unnes considers a new study which looks at the impact of increasing diversity on Swedish popular music.

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Brazen Cuban Street Artist El Sexto Talks About His Work, Prison And Activism

Brazen Cuban Street Artist El Sexto Talks About His Work, Prison And Activism

Danilo Maldonado, the Cuban graffiti artist and human rights activist known as El Sexto, is the very antithesis of the communist “new man” the Castro revolution was supposed to create.

Maldonado spent 55 days in prison after spray painting “Se Fue” — He’s Gone — on a wall of the Habana Libre Hotel the day after Fidel Castro died. He was released Jan. 21 and is now in Miami to thank his supporters and promote his art.

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15 Artists, Shows, and Works Censored in 2016

15 Artists, Shows, and Works Censored in 2016

In November, Cuban dissident artist Danilo “El Sexto” Maldonado Machado was detained by police after he released a video celebrating the death of Fidel Castro. In the video, posted on social media, the artist rants against Castro calling him a “mare.” The Cuban police constituted this as falling under the criminal offense of “disrespect.” This was not the first time Maldonado has been in trouble with the Cuban authorities. In December 2014, he spent 10 months in prison for painting the names “Fidel” and “Raul” on a pair of pigs.

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Talking Protest and Art with El Sexto, Cuba's "Banksy on Steroids"

Talking Protest and Art with El Sexto, Cuba's "Banksy on Steroids"

Danilo Maldonado Machado has no fucks left to give. Known to the world as El Sexto, the 33-year-old Cuban artist works at the crossroads where graffiti, performance art, and live video streaming converge as tools for political activism. The winner of the prestigious Václav Havel International Prize for Creative Dissent, El Sexto is Banksy on steroids, and no canvas attracts more attention than the crumbling façades of Havana's neglected, dilapidated buildings (though a recent drought in spray paint supplies has him turning more to performance art and live video). He's emerged at the forefront of a wave of dissident Cubans, many of them millennials, who are using art, citizen journalism, and activism to dismantle what they say is a repressive apparatus that has been deliberately designed to perpetuate the Castro family's nearly-60-year stranglehold on their country. Art, music, and technology have coalesced to question why the Cuban government is opening Cuba to the world now, while simultaneously preventing the same access to its own people. On the phone from Havana, El Sexto discussed graffiti as protest art, the power held by Cuba's youth, and his hopes for Cuba's future. 

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Meet El Sexto, The Performance Artist Fighting For Cuba’s Freedom

Meet El Sexto, The Performance Artist Fighting For Cuba’s Freedom

“If they kill me, I won’t be the first or the last.”

That’s what prominent Cuban dissident and performance artist Danilo Maldonado Machado told The Huffington Post’s Alyona Minkovski when they met in Havana on Sunday.

Maldonado, also known as El Sexto or The Sixth, has for years been advocating for regime change and freedom of expression in his country. He is fighting for liberty, which he defines as values ranging from the freedom to go online to the freedom of citizens to form political parties and elect their own president.

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Amnesty International Calls for Release of Cuban Dissident Artist

Amnesty International Calls for Release of Cuban Dissident Artist

Earlier this week, Amnesty International issued an urgent call for the release of Cuban graffiti and performance artist Danilo Maldonado Machado, also known as El Sexto. Timing the plea to coincide with the meeting of the United Nations General Assembly and naming Maldonado a “prisoner of conscience,” the human rights organization’s Americas Deputy Director for Research Carolina Jiménez said Maldonado’s detention “shows … that while Raúl Castro shakes hands with the world in his historic visit to the USA, things have hardly changed in Cuba, where people are still being thrown in jail solely for peacefully exercising their right to freedom of expression.”

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