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Artists launch rebel exhibition against the arms trade, oil and injustice

ARTISTS who withdrew their work from the Design Museum in opposition to an arms industry event are displaying it in their own exhibition from tomorrow.

The Nope To Arms collective will put up their work along with other political, activist and grassroots art until September 23 in Brixton, south London as part of the London Design Festival.

Work by 40 artists including Shepard Fairey, Jeremy Deller, the Guerrilla Girls, Tania Bruguera and Milton Glaser will be shown at the "From Nope to Hope" exhibition.

The exhibit, making up a third of the original event, was removed on August 2 after finding out the museum recently hosted an event for major global arms company Leonardo.

Leonardo has armed and supported human rights abusing regimes and dictatorships around the world, including Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the Philippines.

Artist and exhibition organiser Charlie Waterhouse said museum co-director Deyan Sudjic criticised the removal of the art because it denied people the opportunity to see the work, and the artists were “taking the easy route to protest by attacking a soft target” rather than the arms industry itself.

“So Deyan, back at ya, with bells on,” he said.

“From Nope to Hope not only puts the majority of the removed work back on show, it does it for free, and adds a wealth of new material and artists into the mix."

Mr Waterhouse added that the show exhibits the work “in its activist context.”

He added: “The art here is a by-product of real world, grassroots DIY activism, the likes of which the ivory-towered Design Museum can only dream of through an Instagram filter.

"From Nope to Hope’s artists break laws, get banged up and make constant sacrifices in the name of their ethical beliefs.

"The show will hopefully be an inspiration for all – and a rallying cry to anyone who’s ever wanted to stand up to injustice, speak truth to power and make their world a kinder, safer, more beautiful place."

From Nope to Hope will be launched on Saturday September 15 at 6pm and will be on display daily from 9am to 9pm at the Brixton Recreation Centre.


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