Iraqi Pavilion in Venice closed as Ruya Foundation calls for cultural strike

The Ruya Foundation for Contemporary Culture in Iraq has decided to take a stand against state corruption and the deteriorating economic and living conditions in Iraq, in solidarity with the uprisings that have erupted amongst the country's youth, calling for a strike of cultural institutions.


Joining the wave of protests taking place for greater civil rights against ruling elites internationally — in Algeria, Lebanon, Syria, Sudan, Chile, Ecuador and Hong Kong for example — the foundation stated that it "also shares this local, regional and global yearning to dream, to aspire, to think, to fight for and embrace new visions of a future that is inclusive of all, especially the younger generations that are the vanguard of this change". 


In the belief that culture , as an integral part of society, is a powerful force for change towards greater liberty, the commissioner of the Iraq Pavilion at the 58th Venice Biennale 2019 have closed the Fatherland exhibition by Serwan Baran in solidarity. The Ruya Shop in Baghdad will also be closed.


Read the full statement here.