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The pop star who once proudly told us she was a material girl, now stands for global freedom of expression. This month, she launches her Art for Freedom, an online initiative to further change via artistic creation. The project, created by Madonna herself and curated by VICE, will be distributed by BitTorrent—that's right, one of those file-sharing networks where one used to be able to nab bootlegs from the Virgin tour.

Madonna's secretprojectrevolution film, a 17-minute film she co-directed with Steven Klein, will be distributed as a BitTorrent Bundle on the network. The film, plus bonus content, is free to download beginning September 24 at 2pm EST at bittorrent.com

"I hope my film and other submissions to Art For Freedom will be a call-to-action and give people a place to voice their own creative expression to help fight oppression, intolerance, and complacency," says Madge.

The global, digital platform won't just be for Guy Ritchie's exes, however. Creative members of the public will be able to submit to the Art For Freedom platform by uploading original artwork or tagging their posts #artforfreedom. In other words, most content will be crowd-sourced, with VICE presumably pushing the good bits to the top. 

Is this platform made to last; is it going to amount to anything at all? It's hard to say—we'll check again post-launch.


Britney Spears' requests: Fish and chips, McDonald’s cheeseburgers without the buns, 100 prunes and figs, a framed photo of Princess Diana.

The backstage food requests of musicians range from the practical: liquor, cough drops, and tea for Frank Sinatra, to the strange: Nine Inch Nails' two boxes of corn starch. Photographer Henry Hargreaves became fascinated with these demands, and after perusing countless concert riders in The Smoking Gun's database, he photographed the most compelling requests with a bleak Flemish baroque aesthetic. The connection between the baroque and the musicians is intentional, he tells Vice:

"I felt that there was a direct connection between the themes in these types of paintings and the riders: the idea of time passing and the ultimate mortality of a musician’s career as the limelight inevitably fades—they only have a short time in which they are able to make these demands and have them fulfilled."

See the rest of the backstage snacks over at Vice