E. German artists, civil rights leaders to talk about freedom

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — From the Berlin Wall to “whites only,” freedom has had its challenges.

Today dissident German artists from the former East Germany will join Joe Goldthreate and Dr. Rip Patton, participants from the Nashville sit-ins, as well as George Barrett, a Nashville attorney active in the civil rights movement, for a dialogue on civil rights and freedom of expression at the First Amendment Center.

The event was rescheduled after airline disruptions in Europe delayed the artists' arrival.

Whether the subject is the struggle against abuse of power in the former East Germany or against segregation laws, this dynamic conversation will address the common challenges created by repression.

The panel will take place in the lecture hall from 3-5 p.m. A reception will follow in Room 106. The event is open to the public. Seating is limited. To RSVP, call 615/727-1333.

Marking the 20th anniversary of Germany’s reunification and the 50th anniversary of the Nashville sit-ins, the discussion will be moderated by First Amendment Center Founder John Seigenthaler; Breakthrough Art Foundation founder Jeff Thinnes; and the executive director of the First Amendment Center, Gene Policinski.

The German artists included in the discussion are showcasing their artwork at the First Amendment Center from April 19 to May 8 in an exhibit titled “Breakthrough! Twenty Years after German Unification: Critical Perspectives of Berlin Artists.” This exhibit features the work of 10 German artists who lived and created art under the communist regime in former East Germany. Breakthrough! is the inaugural project of Breakthrough Art Organization, a nonprofit founded in 2009 to champion artists whose works are a means of overcoming political, social and personal challenges.

The First Amendment Center is at 1207 18th Ave. S., Nashville.