Index on Censorship’s Freedom of Expression Awards celebrate those who have had significant impact fighting censorship anywhere in the world. There are four categories: Arts, Campaigning, Journalism and the Trustee award. Winners are honoured at a gala celebration in London and receive dedicated training and support.

The panel of judges for the 2022 Freedom of Expression Awards are award-winning artist and academic Coco Fusco, BAFTA and award-winning artist Alison Jackson, and Executive Editor and Culture Editor of The Sunday Times Ben Preston.

The 22nd Annual Freedom of Expression Awards were held on Thursday 28 October 2022 in London.


The Freedom of Expression Awards Fellowship exists to celebrate individuals or groups who have had a significant impact fighting censorship anywhere in the world. Through the fellowship, Index works with the winners to provide tailored support.

The winners of the 2022 Freedom of Expression Awards are: Cuban artist Hamlet Lavastida (arts); the Russian human rights project OVD-Info (campaigning); Chinese activist and journalist Huang Xueqin (journalism), and the Ukrainian author Andrey Kurkov (trustee award).

Previous winners include courageous Honduran investigative journalist Wendy Funes who uncovers corruption and covers the ongoing violations of women’s rights in the country, and anonymous Chinese digital activists GreatFire who have secured significant additional funding since their award.

Click here to find out more about previous winners.

The awards illustrations (above) have been created by vawongsir, a former secondary school visual arts teacher in Hong Kong. He created pro-democracy political cartoons on social media that have been widely shared. In 2020, he officially faced disciplinary action, when the Education Bureau ruled that he had committed professional misconduct. In 2022, he left Hong Kong citing fear of sedition arrest and he continues to make and share art about Hong Kong.


If you are interested in sponsorship of the 2023 Freedom of Expression Awards you can contact [email protected]


The 2022 Freedom of Expression Awards winners were announced at a ceremony in London. This special event seeks to celebrate free expression activists and champions. The broadcaster, journalist and commentator Ayesha Hazarika served as ceremony compere.