More than 70 artists announced yesterday that they were going on strike calling on Finland's Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma to sever ties with a billionaire art collector whose wealth has been accumulated through defence contracts with Israel, Hyperallergic reported.
In an open letter, the artists highlighted that Chaim "Poju" Zabludowicz has arranged for artwork to be donated to Kiasma, adding that links to the billionaire are questionable as he "set up the UK-based BICOM (Britain Israel Communications and Research Centre), whose reports seek to refute any claims that the actions of the State of Israel constitute apartheid rule."
"Zabludowicz runs the Tamares Group, founded by his father, which made its money by facilitating arms trading between the states of Finland and Israel," they added.
"The international community is growing increasingly vigorous in its condemnation of Israel's oppression of the Palestinian population," they said, calling to question Kiasma's safer-space policy which allows Zabludowicz to be on the board of the institution's Support Foundation.
They highlighted that an international Boycott Divest Zabludowicz (BDZ) campaign was set up in 2014 and is signed by the founder of the Forensic Architecture group Eyal Weizman, among others, and calls for a boycott of all institutions linked to the Finnish-British billionaire.