“Donate a square centimeter of your skin for human rights” is the slogan of the Human Rights Tattoo campaign which began as response to the murder of Steven ‘Nyash’ Nygah in Nairobi and has morphed into a worldwide effort to ink the complete Declaration of Universal Human Rights, all 6,773 characters of it, on 6,773 people around the world.
The brainchild of the Netherlands-based visual artist Sander van Bussel and his Tilburg CowBoys collective, the project will now be making a stop in Prague as a part of the One World (Jeden svět) documentary festival, which began earlier this week.
On Saturday, March 12 from 12pm to 7pm, Lucerna Gallery will become a pop-up tattoo parlor with Czech tattoo artist Mirek Kerim inking a letter onto anyone who wants to make a highly personal statement about the worldwide struggle for human rights.
While participants are not able to choose their own letter, they will be able to select from a font catalogue and, of course, choose which part of their body will be forever dedicated to humanitarian activism.
The project operates on donations; 1,000-1,500 CZK is the suggested cost for a tattoo of this size. Completed tattooes will be photographed and published on the project’s website with your own personal statement.
Organizers say that “Having a letter of the Human Rights Declaraion means you are reminded of yours and everybody else’s rights. It is a way of putting your signature under the Declaration of Human Rights only this time a piece of the document is signed on you.”
It is hoped that the Prague event will make a dent in the remaining 3,933 letters; organizers suggest showing up early as a limited number of tattoos are available.