Swedish Artist Sentenced for Racist Posters

by Andrew Johnson

A Swedish court has sentenced artist Dan Park to six months in prison and fined him about $10,000 for works deemed insensitive and denigrating to blacks and Roma people. He was sentenced for incitement to racial agitation and defamation.

Park’s controversial works were presented in a Malmö art gallery last month. The posters portrayed black men with nooses, as well as a local Roma figure with text appearing to condone crime, according to the Associated Press.

The Local, an English-language Swedish news site, reports that gallery’s chief was also fined and received a suspended sentence.

This isn’t the first time Park has faced legal repercussions for his art. In 2011, he made headlines by targeting a national black leader named Jallow Momodou by portraying him in chains in a poster with the text “Our negro slave has run away”; Momodou had called for action following a university party in which a group of students dressed as slaves were “sold.”

Park has said his works are an exercise in free speech and satirical in intent, according to the AP.

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