2014 Laureates

The Václav Havel International Prize for Creative Dissent celebrates those who, with bravery and ingenuity, unmask the lie of dictatorship by living in truth.

2014 Laureates

The 2014 Havel Prize Laureates are as follows:

Erdem Gunduz

Erdem Gunduz, known as the “Standing Man,” is a performance artist who rose to prominence during the 2013 anti-government protests in Turkey. After Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan issued a ban on demonstration in Istanbul, Gunduz stood silently on the sealed-off Taksim Square for more than six hours, even as Turkish police tried to provoke a response from him. Unfazed, Gunduz continued his silent protest and was joined by hundreds of others, becoming a powerful symbol of the movement.

Pussy Riot 

Pussy Riot is a Russian punk rock protest group of women who don colorful balaclavas and perform in public places to draw attention to the abuses of Vladimir Putin’s regime. Their music and impromptu concerts are a form of "dissident art" created to support individual liberties in the face of an increasingly authoritarian Russian state. Pussy Riot was  represented in Oslo by Maria Alyokhina and Nadezha Tolokonnikova, who served 21 months in Russian prison camp for performing a protest song in the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow.

Dhondup Wangchen

Dhondup Wangchen is a Tibetan filmmaker imprisoned by the Chinese dictatorship on charges of subversion after producing the documentary “Leaving Fear Behind.” The film features interviews with ordinary Tibetans discussing the Beijing Olympics, the Dalai Lama, and the Chinese Communist Party. Dhondup was sentenced to six years in prison for producing the film, despite calls for his release by international human rights organizations. While in prison, his health deteriorated dramatically and his family alleged that he was denied proper medical care. Dhondup Wangchen was finally released on June 5, 2014, but he remains unable to travel outside of China. His wife, Lhamo Tso, accepted the prize on his behalf during the ceremony at the 2014 Oslo Freedom Forum.