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Myanmar artists draw on creative arsenal

Protest art goes underground as opposition steps up 'war' on military regime

Detail of "2021 Burma" by Yarzar Myo. Since the Feb. 1 military takeover, Myanmar has seen an outpouring of artistic expression among both seasoned professionals and young artists who oppose the new regime. (Courtesy of the artist)

SINGAPORE -- In the eight months since Myanmar's military arrested the country's elected leaders and seized power, the new regime's violent crackdown on dissidents has pushed young people to create political art that serves as a unifying voice for a nation mired in a deepening crisis.

"I knew so little about politics before the coup," said a young graphic artist, who uses the pseudonym Apzolute and studied in the English city of Bristol before returning to Yangon in 2019. "Yet now, freedom of speech, the right to demonstrate, to have security and the prospect of a proper job have all have been destroyed by the junta."

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