The Voice Group, a nonprofit organization dedicated to defending freedom of expression, teamed up this week with artists including Johnny Depp, Peter Gabriel, Pussy Riot's Nadya Tolokonnikova, and Tom Morello to launch a campaign called "Imprisoned for Art," designed to draw awareness to artists who are imprisoned around the world due to their creative output.
The campaign is centered around a striking visual concept: Each artist takes on the identity of a currently imprisoned counterpart, wearing the subject’s arrest information via a traditional mugshot police board hung around the neck.
Peter Gabriel, who represents award-winning author Dawit Isaak, explains why he became involved with the project: “When I first started traveling around the world [for the Human Rights Now tour in 1988], I was shocked to discover in how many countries there were artists who were in jail, or who had been tortured or killed for doing exactly the same thing that I do — writing and singing songs." he notes. "We have to defend and protect those with the courage to speak out.”
All the images will be available for sale on T-shirts through Dec. 1, with 100 percent of proceeds benefitting advocacy efforts. For more information or to become involved, click here.