"Gov. LePage ordered the removal of a 36-foot, 11-panel mural by Maine artist Judy Taylor from the foyer of the Maine Department of Labor in Augusta because, he claimed, it is "too one-sided", pro-union, and anti-business."
More information on this is all over the place, but I found it difficult to find a full set of images of the mural itself, so all 11 panels can be viewed by clicking here.
Judy Taylor's website has a thorough explanation of the mural here.
This past week I spent five days in Winnipeg installing an exhibition at Urban Shaman. I am pretty excited about showing both in Winnipeg and, particularly, at Urban Shaman. As both an Indigenous and artist-run center, Urban Shaman is one of the very few spaces for the exhibition of contemporary aboriginal art in North America. According to the Urban Shaman website: "Established in 1996 as an Aboriginal artist-run centre, Urban Shaman: Contemporary Aboriginal Art (US) is designated for the exhibition and discussion of contemporary First Nations, Métis and Inuit art. US holds a vital position as one of only three Aboriginal artist-run centres in Canada and exists as a key voice in the regional, national and international discourse surrounding contemporary Aboriginal art."
Thanks to all the rad people in Winnipeg, especially Jenny Western (curator), Kevin Lee Burton (programming director), and Amber-Dawn Bear Robe (director).
March 25 – April 30, 2011
Urban Shaman Gallery
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
The labor battle in Wisconsin has become a never ending seesaw of good news followed by bad news. Yesterday a Madison judge ruled that the union-busting bill could not be implemented and the matter would be re-examined in court on Friday. Today, Walker basically said that they are above the law and will implement the law anyway. Matthew Rothschild offers some important critique and fighting words to the rogue governor and his administration. I especially appreciated his call for public employee's to consider forming a class action suit against the state of Wisconsin for tampering with their paychecks if our paychecks are indeed docked. As this situation continues to boil, one must ask: how far will these thieves go to break the law to crush public employee unions and the middle class? And, how long and how hard will people continue to fight back. From my optimistic vantage point, it looks like Wisconsin workers are showing absolutely no signs of quit. Some fatigue has set in, but anger remains at an all time high.
Walker and Cronies Are Lawless Bastards!
By Matthew Rothschild, March 30, 2011
"In Wisconsin, the governor is daring to defy the judiciary. On Tuesday, after Judge Maryann Sumi ordered Gov. Walker and his administration for the second time not to implement the anti-union bill they rammed through, they acted like they could still ignore her court order.
"We don't believe that the court can enjoin non-parties,” Bill Cosh, a spokesman for the state’s Department of Justice, said in a statement. Amazingly, he added that it’s up to Walker’s administrators themselves to decide whether they want to obey the judge or not. “Whether the Department of Administration or other state officers choose to comply with any direction issued by Judge Sumi is up to them,” he said.
These guys would make Richard Nixon envious of their contempt for the judiciary.
As State Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca told me, “We’re approaching a constitutional crisis.” And as he told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel:
"It's just startling that the attorney general believes you should not follow court orders anymore," he said.
This isn’t the first judge’s order the Walker administration has disregarded.
Read the rest of Rothchild's article here
It appears the AFL-CIO is calling for a nationwide day of actions.
Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated on April 4, 1968, in Memphis, Tenn., where he was standing with sanitation workers demanding their dream of a better life. Today, the right to bargain collectively for a voice at work and a middle-class life are under attack as never before. Find out more here.
Join us to make April 4, 2011, and the days surrounding it, a day to stand in solidarity with working people in Wisconsin and dozens of other states where corporate-bought politicians are trying to take away the rights Dr. King gave his life for.
You can find events in your area at:
I mention this on the Justseeds blog, because if activities like this are your bag then check out the downloadable graphics from a Justseeds blog post earlier this month:
Wisconsin Downloadable Graphics Page
Print out useful ones, let others be inspiration to make new images.
Walker's Point Center for the Arts (WPCA) in Milwaukee is hosting a timely show this Friday that celebrates the art and life of Carlos Cortéz. Included in this show are prints by his allies in the labor movement/Chicana rights/anti-war/radical art community - many of whom are part of Justseeds. Prints by Favi, Josh, Nicolas, Dylan, and Collin are included in the exhibition. (Dylan also included some text and long-time friend to Justseeds, Susan Simensky Bietila, helped co-organize the show.) Many might recall that WPCA hosted the Paper Politics exhibition when it was in Milwaukee, so please come out and support this important show and vital art space that is at the epicenter of the community arts scene in Milwaukee.
Exhibition runs: April 1 – May 14, 2011
Opening Reception: Friday, April 1 from 5 – 9pm
Spring Gallery Night: Friday, April 15 from 5 – 9pm
After filling the last 3 months with two different five-week series (prisons and Kropotkin), I'm ready to jump into something completely different. For the most part over the past year I've been focusing on book covers from the turn of the 20th Century to the 1980s or 90s, so I thought it would be cool to try to look as some more contemporary cover design work.
About 5 years ago a series of books being produced by a small independent publisher from Canada started catching my eye. The series is named Semaphore, and the publisher is small collectively-run press named Arbeiter Ring. The series kicked off in 2002 with a book by Ian Angus, and reached eight titles at the end of last year with Grammar Matters by Jila Ghomeshi. I haven't read all the books (though I have read a couple, and they were quite good!), and the insides aren't my focus here, instead this is a review of the outsides.
I created this graphic in response to the events of 2011 which connects the Mideast to the Midwest: the people's movements in Tunisia, Egypt, and Wisconsin.
Listing only three locations is an oversimplification as we all know that movements are taking place in other countries and states, but these three locations have become symbolic - much in part to the global media attention. Many of us in Wisconsin were humbled and overjoyed when we heard that demonstrators in Egypt were holding signs in solidarity with us in Madison.
A short video about a community in Southern Mexico organizing resistance to future mining projects. They have set up a valuable tool: a community radio station to disseminate information to the surrounding areas. Radio is an incredible resource for indigenous communities and their resistance to the insatiable industrial system. While the video makes the usual activist media mistakes (like presuming viewer awareness), I encourage folks to further research.
The CRAC is a community police force and alternative justice program. I was fortunate enough to visit one of their assemblies, years ago, and witnessed successful attempts to create a system that responds and is accountable to its constituents. Anyone interested in restorative justice and incarceration alternatives should explore what these municipalities are doing in Guerrerro, Mexico.
Worse, Republicans want to model Wisconsin after Arizona. Voces de la Frontera, a large immigrant rights organization in Milwaukee held its first emergency meetings last Sunday to inform the public that Representative Pridemore (WI Assembly Republican from Hartford) is now circulating his Arizona-style immigration enforcement bill for co-sponsors in Madison. Over 500 concerned members of the community showed up (in Milwaukee and Racine) to stratigize on how to defeat this bill, which would be devastating for the Latino community and others, as it would legalize racial profiling and lead to more deportations.
In other not-so-enlightening news, the Legislative Reference Bureau has published Walker's anti-union bill despite a court order preventing publication on grounds that the bill’s passage likely violated Open Meetings laws.
How this will play out is anyone's guess. Already the Walker administration and the State have been sued multiple times, so I expect a drawn-out court battle.
To learn more: click here
In more inspiring news, the activist spirit in Wisconsin has not dimmed. Protests, rallies, organizing, recall drives, etc are taking place all over the state. One question to the union leaders: How far do the Republicans have to go in destroying public unions and the working class before you call a strike?
Inspired by the free downloads we've been putting up about Wisconsin, a friend in the UK has created a free downloadable poster page related to the protests against the cuts over there. Very cool. Check it out HERE. And there is another HERE.
Justseeds' Mary Mack Tremonte will be a special guest star on Radio Free Pittsburgh on WPTS this Sunday March 27th from 1:00 to 3:00 in the afternoon. Tune in on your radio dial (92.1 fm) or by streaming online (www.WPTSradio.org) . Phone lines will be open, so if there is anything you ever wanted to ask her this is your chance! We'll be talking about Justseeds, radical art, signifiers, and the politics of social space, particularly the danceparty. Mary Mack will play a few records as well.
Journalist and photographer David Bacon has just sent out another good piece, reminding us that labor unrest and organizing is happening all over the country, not just in Wisconsin:
FOUNDRY WORKERS STRIKE TO SAVE THEIR HEALTHCARE
Photos and text by David Bacon
BERKELEY, CA 3/22/10— A strike of over 450 workers in one of the largest foundries on the west coast brought production to a halt Sunday night, at Pacific Steel Castings. The work stoppage, which began at midnight, has continued with round the clock picketing at the factory gates in west Berkeley.
Local 164B of the Glass, Molders, Pottery, Plastics and Allied Workers International Union (GMP) has been negotiating a new labor agreement at Pacific Steel for several months. The old agreement expired on Sunday night.
The strike was caused by demands from the company's owners for concessions and takeaway proposals in contract negotiations. Those include:
- requiring workers to pay at least 20% of the cost of their medical insurance, amounting to about $300 per month per employee.
- a wage freeze for the first two years of the agreement, and tiny raises after that.
- eliminating the ability of workers to use their seniority to bid for overtime, allowing criteria including speedup, discrimination and favoritism.
Justseeds was recently mentioned in a local article. Which is totally awesome press! However, I also want to avoid the possible interpretation of us as primarily competition for other local businesses, so I wanted to expand upon the conversation about small businesses in the struggling market.
You can read the original article
I love Tiny Showcase, and find what they do to be inspiring and vital to artists and people who love art. Justseeds has been selling prints online since 1998, but the print sales is a small part of what we do. However, more than anything else, I love and appreciate how vital Tiny Showcase, Justseeds, and every other up and coming artist run business is in bringing beautiful and thoughtful art into our lives. If there is currently an increase in artist run businesses, I see that as a success. We need to welcome and support all small artisan run businesses, and appreciate the diversity and uniqueness that every small business brings with them. There is also a lot of possibility for ways that small businesses can work together and support one another as well. Tiny Showcase and Justseeds can serve as an example for the way in which small businesses support each other rather than compete with each other. Last year, Peter Glantz worked with Black Cat Graphics to create two offset prints; 'Your Heart Is A Prism' and 'Change Your Relationship to Nature'. He had a signed, numbered, limited edition that was for sale first at Tiny Showcase (both prints sold out) and then after they sold out, an unsigned, unnumbered edition became available on the Justseeds website. This worked out beautifully. We do have some crossover of our audience (I for instance buy art from both Tiny Showcase and Justseeds), but also we do have our own unique audiences. Tiny Showcase has an audience of art collectors who appreciate special and small print runs, and Justseeds tends to accommodate more of the 'masses' seeking art from an explicitly social change perspective. We both are small organizations that are made up of artists, which serve artists and the people who need art, but I think it is a huge mistake to categorize our existence as competing with one another.
More about Tiny Showcase HERE.
Magic Lantern Cinema Presents: The Dancing for Dara Show TONIGHT!
Here's a couple of images in solidarity with the people of Michigan that were forwarded to us by Kathleen Judge:
Checking Militarism - Public broadcaster giving airtime to war
I just completed this illustration for an article in The Dominion newspaper. For those or you unfamiliar it is a great monthly paper published by a network of independent journalists in Canada since May 2003. It is a project of Canada's first media cooperative. The piece is a look at the role of sports and militarism, in particular the role of right wing hockey commentator Don Cherry. He is the host of Coaches Corner which airs during the first intermission of Hockey Night in Canada. Exploiting the nations obsession with hockey he is constantly proselytizing Canada's involvement in the war in Afghanistan. He is a brash, bombastic, tackily dressed neo con loved and loathed across the country.
Friday, March 25th , 6-9 pm
THEM by Dave Loewenstein
An installation of cut-paper tableaus that follow Drones, Nimbys, and Frame-up Specialists as they try to rid their back yards, business districts, and border towns of Them.
at the Invisible Hand
upstairs at 801 1/2 Massachusetts, Lawrence, KS
Here's the final installment of the Peter Kropotkin book cover series, 19 covers this week, 69 total over the 5 week series. Although what initially drew me to doing these post about Kropotkin was a focus on the all the different representations of his beards, he is actually an interesting subject for this kind of visual inquiry, as his writing has been published by hundreds of publishers in dozens of languages for more than 100 years. I'm sure these 69 books are merely the tip of the iceberg, and some additional research could really illuminate how Kropotkin was represented in different geographies in different time periods, and how those representations related to the design conventions of the day. But that is a project for a different day.
Today I'm going to go through the last of these covers, starting with another one of Kropotkin's popular books, Memoirs of a Revolutionist. I like the 1962 Anchor pocketbook edition to the left for a couple different reasons. First, the simple sans serif text and the almost tourist-like photo of pre-Soviet Russian arabesque architecture are unassuming, it takes a minute to see that the building is actually completely dwarfing the people, and that it would take some serious revolutionary zeal to face off with the power of the Russian Czar and Church, a power literaly inscribed into the landscape. Second, the downplaying of the "Revolutionist" in the title is hard to imagine on a cover made today. This book would be published not by Doubleday or a any major publishing house, but a niche political publisher like AK or PM, who would likely feel the need to play up both Kropotkin as an important individual and his anarchist credentials in order to appeal to their audiences.
Here is a great talk given by Roger Peet at the Portland State University Monday Night Lecture Series back in January of this year. Roger gives a great overview of Justseeds, his work, and his thoughts on a couple problems in the world. It's over an hour long; skip the first 5 minutes as they are just setting up the sound and camera. There are also other PSU lectures worth watching here.
Radio CPR and friends present... a benefit for the fabulous artist and activist Dara Greenwald, our dear friend who is battling cancer.
SPOONBOY + + + folk-punk favorite
DANCING FOR DARA + + + film shorts*
BUBBLING WELL + + + (acoustic melodies)
Friday, March 25th
La Casa (3166 Mt. Pleasant St. NW, WDC)
$5-20 sliding scale
Tasty treats also available for the snacking.
*Video Data Bank of Chicago has assembled a program of exciting videos by internationally recognized artists who have donated their work to benefit Dara:
Pink Bloque, DANCING IN THE STREET (excerpts) (Domestic Violence Awareness Month Rally), October 2003 to end, 8:00—14:00
Ben Coonley, ONE TRICK PONY, 2002, 4:50
Tara Matiek, OPERATION INVERT, 2003, 12:30
Caspar Stracke & Gabriela Monroy, KULESHOV SUKIYAKI, 2004, 2:58
Melinda Stone & Igor Vamos, SUGGESTED PHOTO SPOTS, 1997, 10:00
Jim Finn, SHARAMBABA, 1999, 3:00
Jem Cohen, LITTLE FLAGS, 2000, 6:30
Paul Chan, UNTITLED VIDEO ON LYNNE STEWART AND HER CONVICTION, THE LAW AND POETRY, 2006, 17:30
Dara Greenwald with Ona Mirkinson, THE PACKAGE, 2010, 12:00
Learn more about Dara's work here: http://www.daragreenwald.com/.
Erik Ruin and I (Josh MacPhee) currently have work in a cool looking exhibition in Amman, Jordan at a venue called (The Studio). The show was organized by Nidal El-khairy (a fabulous graphic artist who was involved in social movements in Montreal—where I met him—before returning to Lebanon and organizing there). You can watch a short video about the exhibition HERE.
Saturday, March 19th, 7 PM
Doors at 7PM, bidding ends at 9pm, party till 10pm.
At Not An Alternative/Change You Want To See Gallery
84 Havemeyer Street, Williamsburg Brooklyn
The complete Voices From Outside: Artists Against the Prison Industrial Complex created by the JustSeeds Collective for the 10th anniversary of Critical Resistance.
AND Artworks by:
Bill Mazza, Chris Cardinale, Vikki Law, Vandana Jain, Audrey Dantzlerward, Mac McGill, Elizabeth Hamby, Antonio Serna, Mónica Félix, William Wulff, Eric Doeringer, Luis Martin, Priska Wenger, Sevonna Brown, Laura Whitehorn, Carey Lamprecht, Megan Books, christina armas, Kelly Savage, Kevin Hong
Guest speaker from the Justseeds Artists' Cooperative
Music by Avani Mehta & DJ Duncan
All funds raised will be spent on postage to send books to prisoners.
Learn more about Books Through Bars
Iraq Veterans Against the War calls on all veterans and peace organizations to mobilize to Madison, Wisconsin on March 19th, the 8th anniversary of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, to stand in solidarity with workers organizing for their rights. We will be joined in the streets by the AFL-CIO, union members, and their supporters:
- 10AM rally at Library Mall, 750 State Street in Madison, WI
- 11AM march up State Street to the capitol, stopping at the Civil War Memorial
- Noon rally and speak-out at the capitol, joined by the Wisconsin AFL-CIO and other unions - King Street entrance
With Scott Walker's latest maneuver to erase collective bargaining rights, Wisconsin workers are calling for continued resistance, with the possibility of a general strike on the table. Scott Walker has threatened to call in the National Guard to repress these mobilizations. As military veterans, we call on our brothers and sisters in the Wisconsin National Guard to refuse and resist any mobilization orders. We believe military service members are public employees. It is dishonorable to suggest that military personnel should be deployed against teachers, health care providers, firefighters, police officers, and other government employees, many of whom are serving in the National Guard. The Wisconsin National Guard was sent in to repress workers fighting for the eight hour workday over a century ago. It is vital that our brothers and sisters know they have a choice and can fall on the right side of history this time by standing with the working people of Wisconsin.
I just finished up my final project for my mapping class:
I am headed to Seattle in a few hours to present a hands-on workshop on Mobile Silkscreen Printing at the National Arts Education Association (NAEA) National Convention, with my life partner-in-teaching, Heather White. Last year we presented workshops on Radical Silkscreen Printing at the NAEA Museum Education preconference in Baltimore. We spend so much time facilitating print projects with teens, which is totally our jam, but I am looking forward to sharing knowledge with fellow educators. Any radical educators who read this blog who are attending the convention? Come say hi! Our workshop is Saturday night, and on Friday we will be doing a silkscreen workshop with my mom's first grade class in Snohomish. Silkscreen Power for Everyone!
(This silly photo is of the silkscreen station at the Justseeds table at the USSF)
The speech by Athens, Wisconsin dairy farmer Tony Schultz at the Madison, Wisconsin rally on Saturday, March 12th was by far the best speech that I have heard in Madison and epitomizes what the struggle in Wisconsin and beyond is all about: urban and rural working class people fighting back against corporate power. Schultz's speech was the highlight of the day. The low-light was the complete lack of diversity of the speakers at the farm labor demo and the failure of all of the speakers to address immigrant rights issues and migrant farm workers issues. Let's hope these issues and struggles become more unified in the labor battles that are unfolding in Wisconsin.
I'm a little late in reposting this, but our friend Erick Lyle (creator of the fabulous Scam zine which we sell on the site HERE) recently had a nice long-format piece of writing published in the Bay Guardian about Nicaraguan/American Bay Area poet and revolutionary Roberto Vargas, and through him, a great social history of the San Francisco Latino political poetry scene of the 1960s-80s. Rather than republish it here, you should just head over the the Bay Guardian website and read it HERE.
This van (seen in Pittsburgh) wryly references the myriad, often toxic rainbow of chemicals found in the hydraulic shale fracturing (or "fracking") method used in drilling and stimulating natural gas wells. Although it's a hot issue in New York and Pennsylvania, these chemicals are making their way into groundwater all over the US - including the "over 32 million gallons of diesel fuel or hydraulic fracturing fluids containing diesel fuel (utilized without permits and despite denial by industry spokespeople) in wells in 19 states between 2005 and 2009.(source)"
This page is a permanent home for all of the Wisconsin Struggle-related download-able graphics we have been posting on Justseeds. All of the images we have posted throughout the fight are collected here in one place. To the right is Colin Mathes' Union Made poster, and a high-res version can be downloaded HERE.
I've been trying to work through some visual ideas around the Wisconsin struggle, and have come up with some beta designs I figure I might as well test here on the site...below are 3 different designs in progress. They all are based on the same idea, the general strike, but the first is the most developed, trying to clarify that we don't need a strike to maintain the status quo (losing benefits, pay, and "rights" while maintaining a legalistic definition of collective bargaining), but to exercise the on the ground power of workers and communities. Please feel free to leave feedback, and I can put up high-res versions of these if people are interested:
Come check out the Justseeds table this weekend at the Charlottesville (Virgina) Anarchist Bookfair, Saturday, March 19! The whole shindig is hosted by Random Row Books at 315 W. Main St. We'll have a bunch of our books, small prints, zines, People's History posters, etc. There's a schedule for the bookfair here, and the organizers are keeping a blog with other details here. Full press release from the organizers after the cut:
Over the next couple weeks I'm going to dig through the rest of the Peter Kropotkin covers I've found. Most are beardless, and many are banal at best, but there are some gems hidden in here. The cover to the right, for instance, is really interesting and strange. A giant generic pink head fills the field of the cover, with a large albatross flying out of the head, out of the person's mind? I'm not sure if the bird is an oblique reference to Mutual Aid, Kropotkin's most influential work, but this is definitely not that book, it's a German edition of his overview of anarchist philosophy and politics. The type is unfortunate, this would actually be an even more challenging and engaging cover if the title was in a cleaner sans serif font and dropped to below the chin, leaving the entire space of the head empty except for the bird in flight.
I was so excited to read about this on Alternet over the weekend!
Everybody knows the GOP's biggest weakness is money, so why not hit 'em in the sweet spot? That's what many amazing Wisconsin firefighters did yesterday when they collectively began withdrawing their funds from Madison's M&I Bank. Heeding a call by Firefighters Local 311 President Joe Conway to 'Move your money,' union members withdrew over $100,000 from the bank...a hefty enough chunk of change that M&I shut its doors and closed for the day at 3PM.
We all need to be thinking about moving our money out of the big corporate banks. This was inspiring! Read more....
Here are a few photos of the protest in Madison today. After some disappointing news this week, it was inspiring to see the largest protest in Madison yet. Labor is high-energy, determined, and a bit pissed in Wisconsin. The Tractorcade was yet another reason to love Wisconsin.
Our friend Brandon Bauer just sent along these 2 new Wisconsin graphics, you can click on them, then save the image to your desktop as high-res:
I also got sent this great pdf by my friend Nathan. It's a poster by the Little Friends of Printmaking. I couldn't find any info about it on their site, but hopefully they'll be cool with me re-posting it here. You can download the pdf by clicking HERE.
Fighting for justice is lifetime commitment; a long walk for the long haul. Victories take months, years, and decades. Public employee workers in Wisconsin suffered a bitter, bitter defeat when fifty years of labor gains were wiped out by Walker and the Republicans who, yesterday, illegally passed, arguably, the most draconian anti-union bill in Wisconsin's history. Next will be a court challenge, recall efforts, and a key vote on a Wisconsin Supreme Court election. One should expect strikes to be called. If not, labor will go down without a fight. Four weeks of demonstrating and a two week occupation of the State Capitol Building did not produce a victory.
The next coming weeks will be key and will determine the future of labor and the middle class in Wisconsin and beyond. People are still fighting mad. The Midwest, once a stronghold for unions, has become witness to a calculated attack by Republicans aimed at destroying public unions, public education, and public health care programs. In short time, the Midwest, already home to massive unemployment and foreclosure rates, is heading the direction of southern states where wages are suppressed and unions are in rapid decline.
Wisconsin Rise Up! I will post a hi res down-loadable image soon. For now, feel feel to use the graphic in any way that you see fit. Prints will also be screened soon. The WI stands for Wisconsin and it also stands for we.
A famous labor poster that appeared shortly after the the Ludlow Massacre in Colorado in 1914 after the National Guard opened fire on 1,200 striking coal miners, killing 19, asked the question, "Is Colorado In America?" The same question now has to be asked about Wisconsin. Democracy is in shambles tonight after Walker and the Republicans used the nuclear option and illegally voted at 6:00pm to end collective bargaining rights for nearly all of Wisconsin's public employees. The Republican-only vote lasted a mere minute-and-a-half and took everyone by surprise.
Protesters immediately stormed the Capitol Building doors and re-occupied the building as police left their posts, likely fearing a riot or people be trampled to death trying to get through a single door. Tonight several thousand demonstrators are inside. Massive demonstrations are called for tomorrow and beyond.
Walker's infamous "air controllers strike moment" has taken place. How the unions and working class people respond in Wisconsin and beyond is anyone's guess. Civil disobedience? Strikes? General Strikes? What is more clear is that the ramifications of what unfolds in the next coming days and weeks are going to have massive ramifications on the future of working class people in the US.
Wisconsin workers urgently need your support. Solidarity is needed throughout the US and the world. Wisconsin workers cannot lose this struggle. Too much is at stake.
Her work is devoted to the idea that everyone should be free to grow and experience their lives on their own terms, liberated from a power and material-driven society that so often values things above people. By helping to provide a visual platform where different communities can have a public voice, Katie is committed to the idea that art can play a major role in social transformation.
Visual Dialogues: Public Art and Social Transformation
Friday, March 11, 6-8pm
Asian American/Asian Research Institute
25 W. 43rd Street,
(btn 5th & 6th Ave)
Photo: Graffiti artists collaboratively paint a wall in Santiago during the multi-day Planetta Graff festival
Our buddy Andalusia just had this great article on the Planeta Rock hip hop fest in Santiago, Chile published in Toward Freedom. She talks about how the movement is DIY, anti-capitalist, and based in popular education.
Check it out HERE!
Thanks to Jason Urban for giving what's going on in Wisconsin more exposure over at Printeresting!
Most of us are watching events unfold in Wisconsin from a great distance but Nicolas Lampert and Colin Matthes of Justseeds are in the eye of the storm. The two have been screen-printing their support for unions non-stop and disseminating their images in Milwaukee and Madison...
Check out the rest on Printeresting.com
Also there is currently an exhibition called SolidARTity, "that reflects the incredible breath of creative voice that exists RIGHT NOW in Madison",
The Project Lodge
817 E. Johnson St
No more beards, but this week I've found cool old-school Kropotkin covers, 19th Century to early 20th. The one to the left is a great Czech modernist cover for Anarchist Morality, designed by Josef Capek and published in 1919. There is little to the design other than the text, yet it explodes off the page.
In March 1911 over a million women and men in Austria, Germany, Denmark and Switzerland came together to mark the first International Women’s Day. It was a remarkable display of solidarity for those fighting discrimination and campaigning for the most basic of women's rights - to vote, to work and to be elected to public office.
March 8th is celebrated in countries around the world, with thousands of events held to honor women. It's a time to celebrate, and also a time to reflect on the status of women today.
"Of the approximately 50 million people displaced from their homelands, about 80 percent are women and children. Of the 1.3 billion people living on less than $1 a day, 70 percent are women. Among the chronically hungry people in the world, 60 percent are women," reports Maryam Roberts in her article, "War, Climate & Women." (read full article here)
You can download the high-res version HERE.
I had been working on this pennant as a utopian call, a hope and desire that Wisconsin would develop from a militant struggle that is awesome and inspiring, but also shockingly reformist, to one with some real teeth and drive towards self-governance. Now it seems that it may be more practical than I thought! Lets dust off ye olde General Strike!!! (Eric Drooker's General Strike stickers also kicked my butt to finish this, thanks Eric!)
Here are high resolution, download-able, black & white copies of this pennant to be photocopied on red paper and pasted on sticks!:
General Strike Pamphlet
What Do We Face?
Walker's bill, if passed, will strip public-sector unions of the right to collectively bargain regarding all workplace issues other than basic wages. Workers would no longer have a legal say in their pensions, their healthcare plans, workplace safety, or any other pertinent issues. Without collective bargaining, we have no legally-recognized way to influence how we are treated at our jobs. Workers with access to a union have an opportunity to make their workplaces more democratic. Think about how much time we dedicate to work and work-related activities. With so much of our lives spent in undemocratic workplaces, how could we have real democracy in the rest of our lives?
New World Border
ARTISTS RESPOND TO US/MEXICO BORDER WALL
March 3 – April 30
Reception: Saturday, March 12, 3:30-5:30 pm
La Peña Cultural Center
3105 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94705 USA
The wall, now being constructed across the length of the US/Mexico border is like a knife cutting off neighbors, wildlife, indigenous people, and families. The wall is inflaming hatred and contributing to an atmosphere of vigilantism and oppression. While the US walls itself off from the world in the name of “security” what is it sacrificing? A group of artists respond to the wall with imagery from a variety of viewpoints.
The artists represent a wide cross section of approaches to the printed image, from esteemed Latino Poster Movement artist Malaquias Montoya, to Black Panther Minister of Culture Emory Douglas, Kearny Street Workshop icon Nancy Hom, New York political illustrator Frances Jetter, co-founder of the California Indian Art Movement, Frank LaPena, as well as powerful work by many other artists. The wall is destroying and dividing families, communities, eco-systems, and indigenous lands. The wall is part of a national move towards increased militarization of all aspects of society. The time to speak out against it is now.
Today HB87 passeds out of the Georgia House of Representatives 113-56. The multi-state plan conceived of by the far-right group Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) is well underway with bills similiar to Arizona's anti-immigrant, anti-human right SB 1070. If you would like to read more about how these bills are not merely "copy cat" actions but a strategy that has been in the works for some time now I recommend reading the well researched blog posts by the Applied Research Center's Seth Wessler and Katrina Hurtado. They have kept mapping the bills and laws as they pop up in more and more states.
If you are in one of these states and would like to have this graphic adapted to apply to your state please send an email to Melanie HERE
I have an artist talk tonight in San Jose!
March 4, at 7:00pm
Location: MACLA - 510 S. First Street San José, CA 95113
If you are familiar with my work, you will know that besides the political posters I do, I also make prints about 80's music that I grew up to. I'm really happy to announce that for the first time ever, my 80's pop-rock posters will be on display as a full body of work in San Jose, CA!
I totally love all the played out, cheesiest, ultra-pop, whitest 80's singers and bands you can imagine. Of course I also enjoy the indie, hard-to-find stuff, but nothing amuses me like Madonna, Cindy Lauper, Depeche Mode, Bruce Springsteen, Def Leppard, Journey!
I have some theories on why this type of music makes me feel really warm and comfortable.
I received this writing from a friend who is a UE staff member. The United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America is a national union representing some 35,000 workers in a wide variety of manufacturing, public sector and private non-profit sector jobs. UE is an independent union that is not affiliated with the AFL-CIO.
My reason for posting this text are two fold: The Justseeds blog always supports critical writing and critical points of views. Second, this is one of the few writings that I have read that is critical of some of the recent tactics and decisions by the higher-up within the three major unions involved in the struggle in Wisconsin.
The text argues that the movement in Wisconsin should be led by rank and file members and workers should not concede paying more for pension and heath care benefits at the expense of Walker's cut-throat policies. The text also urges the strong alliances between EVERYONE in Wisconsin and argues that union members, non-union workers, migrant workers, and the unemployed should come together to form a mass movement.
The author requested that he/she should remain anonymous and we honored that request. We also want to strongly state that those of us in Justseeds in Wisconsin have been working tirelessly to support unions, lend graphics for free to unions, and encourage more people to join unions. We want to see unions become even more powerful and critical writing and debates over tactics and leadership within unions will help this cause.
Realpolitik in the Wood Violet State
by Lucy Parsons, UE staff
"Its pretty clear that we are in an all out class war here and everyone seems to know it," wrote Andrew Sernatinger in a thought-provoking analysis of the dynamics between union leadership, rank and file members and non-union/unemployed workers who have been participating in the demonstrations in Madison, Wisconsin over recent weeks (http://www.solidarity-us.org/current/node/3175).
The unofficial spokesperson of the ruling class, billionaire CEO Warren Buffet famously asserted his class's foreknowledge of said war when he told the New York Times' Ben Stein in 2006, “there’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.”
Considering that Buffet made those comments a full two years before the banks crashed and unemployment skyrocketed, the supplemental history of the past five years can be summed up by saying the generals of the opposing army have marshaled their ground forces in the form of Republican governors and congress people and called in air support in the form of the Koch Brothers and the Obama Administration and are presently attempting to bomb the working class back to the stone age.
As a friend who has held a host of elected union positions within AFSCME Local 82 at the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee has said repeatedly since Scott Walker's Budget Repair Bill was released, "it may be class war but it ain't the revolution."
Yesterday at the protest in Madison, Wisconsin union supporters were banned from entering the State Capital. Only a few supporters were allowed to stay inside. The vast majority of opposition to Scott Walker and his bill to end collective bargaining rights for public workers was locked outside this public building. The energy at the protest was great; more defiant and angry than the past few weeks.
This is also drawing all the time : week 46.
Steve Ignorant and some friends have gotten together to give it one final go with some of our favorite punk anthems from CRASS. For myself the band had broken up by the time I bought my first CRASS album, Feeding of the 5,000. I still feel their message is relevant and inspiring after all these years. So quit slam dancing in the mirror and stage diving onto the bed and get out to one of these gigs and keep the fire burning! Look for an interview with Steve and the band in the weeks to follow. Cheers!
The Last Supper US Tour dates 2011
Thursday MARCH 10 New York, NY @ Santo's Party House
Friday MARCH 11 Montreal, QC @ The Olympia
Saturday MARCH 12 Toronto, ON @ The Opera House
Sunday MARCH 13 Chicago, IL @ Logan Square Auditorium
Wednesday MARCH 16 Seattle, WA @ Neumo's
Thursday MARCH 17 San Francisco, CA @ DNA Lounge
Friday MARCH 18 Pomona, CA @ Fox Theater
Tuesday March 22 Austin, TX @ Emo's
Friday March 25 Baltimore, MD @ Sonar
Join us this Saturday (March 5) in Pittsburgh for a three part event celebrating Dara Greenwald and Josh MacPhee, and help us raise funds to help them both! We've hung a huge exhibit of Josh's print work at our distribution headquarters in Lawrenceville, and we're open throughout the afternoon for anyone to drop in, check it out, and maybe pick up some prints and books. We'll be moving up the hill to the Brillobox for a video screening and dance party in the evening! Details below the cut:
The protest movement in Madison, Wisconsin over collective bargaining rights for public employees has reached day 16 and more solidarity is needed. The stakes are high. Defeat Governor Walker and his right-wing corporate agenda and the labor movement will have achieved one of the most significant victories of the past 50 years. Lose and watch the dominoes fall as public employee unions crumble in Wisconsin and beyond. Lost will be the power of public unions - one of the few remaining structures that can compete and organize against the GOP corporate machine.
Imagine if workers win. We can because this is an obtainable victory. A two-week 24-hour occupation of the Capital Building, daily protests – some that have reached 100,000 people, and the courageous actions of the 14 Democratic Senators who fled the state to block quorum have provided a strong foundation for a potential victory.
This is hands-down one of the most significant people’s movements against corporate power that has taken place in decades. This reminds one of the 1999 Seattle WTO protests. Tens of thousands of Wisconsin workers have come together and displayed incredible levels of solidarity for weeks on end. Firefighters who were exempted from the cuts have marched in solidarity with the teachers, nurses, sanitation workers, snowplow drivers, and others who stand to have their unions lose collective bargaining rights and have their pension and health care costs double. Police officers who were also exempted from the cuts have held up signs that read, “Cops for Labor.” How often does one see this? Private union members in Wisconsin have come out in massive numbers to show support for workers in public unions. This is a moment were unions have demonstrated their strength and have put the labor movement back to where it belongs: at the forefront of a social justice movement.
My buddy Hannah Dobbz is currently researching and writing a book to be published on AK Press on the history of squatting, land struggles, and property law in the United States.
She has a Kickstarter to raise money for travel to research and write. There are some sweet incentives. Check it out!
I'm taking a class in GIS at the local community college and it's super fun! I just made my first map (it's of Portland, OR, by the way):