"A work of art is the unique result of a unique temperament."Oscar Wilde That's what we're afraid of - unique temperament. Artists are unique in their ability to creatively bring forth the pressing issues in the society; they challenge norms through candid art; they don't shy away from asking questions that our mainstream society would happily love to ignore.
And it's the unique temperament that keeps them going in-spite of fierce opposition, censorship in the name of religion, vandalism and even living in exile.
Over here we'll discuss 7 artists who paid a heavy price for speaking up their minds through their work -
1. Taslima Nasreen Taslima Nasreen
an artist of prolific talent, rose to fame with her essays and novels with feminist views and severe criticism of Islam. She'd to flee Bangladesh in 1994 when Islamic extremists threatened to kill her and has been living in exile since.
The author of the controversial book "Lajja"has been on the radar of Bangladeshi jehadi groups but she's untouched by fear. In an interview with The Daily Mail she said "As long as I live I will not be silence' . Did this lady with fearless thoughts and candid expressions really deserve this?
Visit the blogsite of Taslima Nasreen to read her cries for women and the problems created by extremeists
2. M.F.Hussain M.F. Hussain
dubbed as the South Asia's Picasso had to flee India after he depicted Hindu Goddesses in nude. His art was called blasphemous by the religious zealots of the country, who not only attacked Hussain's exhibitions but also gave death threats. This many believe is an irony - since the country is home to many temples that feature sensuously crafted deities. Well, coming all this from the people of a country that gave world the Kama Sutra, we just have to say irony died a cruel death.
Visit some of the greatest fine art and oil painting creations by ShowTainers.
Gulzar's Aandhi what many believe was based on the life of the then Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi, is still considered as a political masterpiece. The female protagonist, Aarti played by Suchitra Sen, dressed , talked and walked like Mrs Gandhi. The movie faced the ire of the sycophants of the Congress party because Gulzar's Aarti smoked and drank. And Mrs Gandhi neither smoked nor drank!
4. Jafar Panahi
A great talent like Jafar Panahi was sentenced to six years of imprisonment and was banned from filmmaking, writing scripts, foreign travel and speaking to the media, can you believe this? Panahi was convicted by the Iranian government for inciting protest against President Ahmadinejad in his unfinished documentary named Offside.
The movie focused on the Iranian girls who are forbidden by law to enter a football stadium to watch a match. The story was inspired by Panahi's daughter on how she travelled and attended a match at the stadium. What was his fault? Was it portraying the reality or being truthful?
Jafar Panahi speaks upon his movie Offside
5. Salman RushdieSalman Rushdie's novel named "The Satanic Verses"which won the Whitebread for the novel of the year in 1988 offended the Islamic community because of the book's negative portrayal of Islam. He questioned the authority of Mohammed as he referred him as "Mahound", a medieval Christian designation.
6. Aamir Khan
The famous Indian Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan faced ire of one and all when he commented that his wife felt insecure for her sons future and was thinking of moving out of the country due to the problem of intolerance in the country.
The statement did not go down well with the people, with the issue reaching the Indian Parliament and members asking for a ban on the icon. A ruffled Aamir hastily withdrew his statement, but the damage to his reputation was already done and he lost his status as brand ambassador to a couple of programs.
Here is what Aamir said in his interview!
7. James Laine
The brouhaha over James Laine's book by different lawmakers and Maratha outfits would have been amusing were it not all that tragic realty. Every one of them are questioning one specific line in what is generally a fine book and one that ought to be read by each one of the individuals who adore the memory of Shivaji.
The majority of all, it ought to be read by the Maratha groups who assert the book affronts Shivaji. The book does no such thing. James Laine is not a student of history. He is a teacher of religious studies. His book: 'Shivaji - Hindu lord in Islamic India' is not a book on Shivaji life but rather on how Shivaji's legacy has been appropriated by different groups to facilitate their own closures.
In that, it is an insightful endeavor that takes a gander at how Shivaji is depicted in the different history books. The state Government has banned the book. On January 5, angry crowds calling itself the Sambhaji Brigade broke into the Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute (BORI), Pune, and ruined invaluable documents and relics.
They besieged the institute, one of the finest archival seats of the nation, because it was acknowledged in the book as Laine's "scholarly home" in India during the time of his research. The loss was a piece of India's own heritage.
Read the controversial subject of James Laine’s novel on Shivaji Maharaj.