As many of our readers here may know, last week, the Myanmar military arrested the renowned Burmese artist and dissident, Htein Lin, and his wife Vicky Bowman, a former British ambassador and human rights activist, at their home in Yangon. The two have been sentenced to a full year in prison.
In the fall of 2018, Artists Beyond Boundaries brought new artwork by Htein Lin and eight other Burmese artists to Northern California for an exhibition at Gallery Route One, entitled “Speaking Out.” The exhibition put a spotlight on the Burmese artists and their struggle to call attention to human rights issues in Myanmar. The drawings and paintings from “Speaking Out” are still here, under our care, and may become the centerpiece of a fundraising event for the artists.
Previously, Htein Lin had spent more than six years in the infamous Insein prison for his activism until his release in 2004. During that time, he smuggled out hundreds of paintings and sculptures that he secretly created in his prison cell. Htein Lin’s wife heads the Myanmar Center for Responsible Business, an organization she founded in 2013 to encourage companies to adhere to international human rights standards.
For more information about Htein Lin and Vicky Bowman and other detained activists visit Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (Burma):