Burma: Htein Lin, an artist-painter in the service of the protest

Burmese artist-painter Htein Lin in November 2015 (image illustration) AFP - ROMEO GACAD

Text by: RFI Follow

3 min

The protest against the coup continues.

While most of the inhabitants are in the streets, others are using the means at their disposal to support the movement.

This is the case with Htein Lin, who raised funds with his artist friends, through the creation and sale of paintings at low prices.


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With our correspondent in Yangon,

Juliette Verlin

With long hair and a smirk, Htein Lin is a famous painter in Burma, at the origin of a project to support the civil disobedience movement in Yangon.

I spoke with artist friends about the creation of an artist street.

It lasted from February 10 to 15.

We artists took to the streets, we painted, people came to see, and we hung our works on the gate of the court of law.

This is why we called the event "Artists' street for the civil disobedience movement

 " ".

Htein Lin and his friends, sometimes as famous as himself, sell their works at a knockdown price, and the funds are entirely donated to the striking populations

protesting against the military government


Art shops offer them free paintings and canvases.

His name is on a list of artists who may soon be arrested by the police, but he shrugs his shoulders at his mention, and tells the origin of his art, when he was in prison from 1998 to 2004. “

I had a lot. of time and I painted on prison uniforms.

Whenever I had charcoal or chalk, I always drew in one line.

I mainly do portraits, it's like a meditation.

I make a starting point on the canvas, and I continue to draw without stopping.

That's how I painted the portrait of Aung San Suu Kyi, you see the word "FREE", behind her, the three fingers of the symbol of the revolution.

The line ends with my signature.


Htein Lin continues to sell his designs in Yangon, to the delight of collectors - and the strikers he supports every day.

To read also: Burma: the police repress the demonstrations, a woman wounded by gunshot


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  • Burma