Tonight 7pm: Arts & Labor Art Writing Roundtable

[via OWS Arts & Labor]

Art Writing as Craft, Labor, and Art: An Arts & Labor Roundtable
Thursday October 25 at 7 p.m.
Housing Works Cafe and Bookstore
126 Crosby Street New York, NY
Admission: a book donation to Housing Works Bookstore Cafe

Art writing is hard work. However, it is often framed as a mythic activity, replete with benefits such as “the power of the pen,” the authority of the critic, and the allure of earning a living while doing something exciting, and meaningful.

The realities of writing about contemporary art include a precarious living, high attrition, hard deadlines, and the charge that criticism is “massively produced, and massively ignored.” Rather than being treated as an art form or a skill developed over time, art writing is frequently viewed as a tool of the market and an index for valuation and canonization, with art writers functioning as cogs in the vast cultural machine.

So why do people continue to write about art? Why does one aspire to become an art writer in a field that has shrinking prestige and financial returns, and when chief-critic positions are becoming scarce? And why, in this economic climate, is art writing thriving online and degree-programs devoted to the field have begun to appear?

Join Arts & Labor for a roundtable to discuss labor conditions in art writing. Hear how various writers’ practices began, how their careers evolved, and what they think about the current state of art writing. Together we will attempt to imagine how writers could develop new networks to support one another, and to practice their art and craft in a sustainable and generative way in the future.

Art writers include: Ben Davis, Kareem Estefan, Ken Johnson, Paddy Johnson, Omar Lopez-Chahoud, Walter Robinson, Mira Schor, Martha Schwendener, and Christian Viveros-Fauné.

Twice the Work, Half the Pay: Entrepreneurship and Exploitation in the Music Industry

[This Thursday. Via Arts & Labor, OWS Arts Network Group, posted on October 4, 2012 ]

1942 Recording BanThursday, Oct. 18, 6-8pm
Judson Memorial Church, Assembly Hall (239 Thompson St., New York)
Facebook invite:  http://www.facebook.com/events/286009974832420

The annual CMJ Music Marathon comes to NYC October 16-20, with panels on the music business promising to “help make sense of the current climate.” But what does it really offer musicians? How does the industry itself, which promotes ideas such as the “super-entrepreneur,” contribute to the difficult conditions musicians face?

Musicians regularly surmount these myriad problems: working for tips, below minimum wage or nothing; misclassification/1099s; inconsistent gigs; multiple employers; a lack of respect for their profession; and a byzantine system of agents, contractors, media and tech companies climbing over each to profit from musicians’ work.

Individually, we make it work because we have to. We have to survive, we have to make a living, we have to perform. The industry leads us to believe that there is no other way to do so. And while so much of our career is social (performing and networking), we are on our own when it comes to the business side. This hardly allows us to see the big picture. Who’s making the money? Why should musicians take on so much of the risk, but little of the reward?

These issues are not unique to the music industry. Many people in professions deemed “entrepreneurial” or “independent” experience similar conditions, including visual artists, taxi drivers, childcare workers, truckers, freelancers, construction workers, domestic workers, writers, and others. How are they addressing these problems?

Join musicians and other workers for a facilitated discussion and strategy session to explore ways we can act together against the systems that keep us isolated and divided.


A collaboration between OWS Arts & Labor99 Pickets, and the Musicians Solidarity Council.

Image above: The 1942 Recording Ban and the ASCAP/BMI War

2NITE: Arts Cluster 5 – Keep it ALIVE!!!

Occupy Wall Street; Arts Cluster 5 -7pm Oct 7, 2012

Dear OWS Arts Groups and people!
The next meeting of the Arts Cluster IS happening this coming Sunday, October 7 at 7 PM at the Commons  388 Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn.

For those new to this list, this is the initiative to bring together the creative community of OWS..an opportunity to share information, resources, grievances and sympathies that can strengthen all of our participation in the huge work at hand.

Some of the topics discussed at past meetings included plans for the GuitarmyA Big ProjectOccupy the Empty Space’s upcoming 10 minute play festival (which was fab!)  , various puppet projects, core issues of artist entitlement, diversity and other arts actions and at the last meeting we spent time talking about events for N17 (including learning the police code of honor that Brook had gloriously set to music – which came in handy for me a couple times!), talked about a solo piece from Occupy Boston which is actually now happening in NY on Oct 22)  and also started a conversation about possible actions around Occupying the Election.

What we have on the table so far for this meeting (as well as other topics which you bring!) are follow ups on some of the above and continuing discussions about subway performances, Occupy Halloween plans and Occupy the Election. Let me know if there is anything which really needs to be added to the agenda followup before we go to new topics in Open Space.
Again – here are four easy requests:

1) It will be a potluck, so please bring some food or liquids to share if you can!

2) Please bring ideas about what to discuss in Open Space! After we do followups, the rest of the meeting, we will use the Open Space model, so that everyone hopefully has has the opportunity to bring their priorities to the group.

3)Please let us know you’re coming, and if we confirm then please also feel free to invite your friends!   If we agree to go ahead – I will also set up a Facebook page that can be used.

4)If there is something that needs to be on the followup list (anything I’ve left out) or anything that needs to urgently be on the agenda before we go to Open Space, please contact me beforehand and let me know.

ALSO LET ME KNOW IF YOU’D LIKE TO HELP FACILITATE THIS MEETING!

Again that’s Sunday October 7 at 7 PM (will end at 10pm) at The Commons  388 Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn.

Hope to see you there!
Morgan and the Arts Cluster team

Thurs Oct 4th @7pm: Struggle for The Commons

The following event is being organized by The Base. The Base will be working with autonomous artist from Occupy Wall Street in the very near future, please sign up to the Art & The Commons email list to receive information on public organizing meetings: http://www.artandthecommons.org/list


Autonomous Movements: The Commons BrooklynOctober 4th, 7PM
Silvia Federici and George Caffentzis

The Commons Brooklyn
388 Atlantic Avenue
(A, C,G to Hoyt-Schermerhorn; F to Bergen St;
B, M, Q, R, 2, 3, 4 and 5 to Atlantic-Pacific)

In celebration of the new radical space, The Base, we are pleased to welcome you to a talk with Silvia Federici and George Caffentzis.

This talk will focus on the struggle for the commons, communalism, and autonomist movements, which will open a discussion on current struggles and the aspirations of this new space. We cordially invite you to take part in this discussion.

Silvia Federici is a scholar, author, teacher, and activist from the radical feminist Marxist tradition. George Caffentzis is a political philosopher and a Marxist. He co-founded the Midnight Notes Collective.

The Base will be a hub for radical organizing, free resources, and workshops.

www.facebook.com/brooklyn.base
www.twitter.com/TheBaseBK
www.kickstarter.com/projects/thebase/the-base

Occupy Musicians to Jay-Z, “Which Side Are You On?”

Occupy Guitarmy May Day 2012 -Youtube Video

The Occupy Guitarmy, a subset of the OWS Music Working group, offers a response to Jay-Z, who today said in the Daily News that OWS’s actions are “un-American.”

“I think all those things need to really declare themselves a bit more clearly because when you just say that ‘the 1 percent is that,’ that’s not true,” he said.

“Yeah, the 1 percent that’s robbing people, and deceiving people, these fixed mortgages and all these things, and then taking their home away from them, that’s criminal, that’s bad.

“Not being an entrepreneur. This is free enterprise. This is what America is built on.”

Jay-Z “supported” Occupy earlier in its first, highly media-friendly moments through his entrepreneurial selling of “Occupy All Streets” t-shirts, although he refused to donate any of the profits of his sales to support the activists and received wide-spread negative publicity for his crass appropriation of the movement’s language.

Now Jay is rolling with even more powerful and popular friends, namely the LIBOR-scandal leading bankers at Barclays, who put their name on the controversial Brooklyn arena where Jay’s basketball team will play and where he will play eight nights to inaugurate the venue.

Jay asked in the article: ““I don’t know what the fight is about. What do we want? Do you know?”

We have spent one year on the streets organizing for exactly the things Jay rapped about in his early days, ending urban poverty, ending Stop & Frisk and police use of lethal force, of returning dignity and hope to the everyday people of New York City. These are simple civil rights issues we know Jay-Z must support, and we would love to help open his heart and mind to the work Occupy has helped do in his own former communities.

On SEPTEMBER 28th we will arrive at his sold-out Barclays concert to lovingly show Jay-Z what we want and how he can help: by encouraging his fans to take action for social justice in their communities, schools, workplaces, and homes.

Join us September 28 at Barclays at 6pm for an Occupy Wall Street teach-in and musical performance. Let’s be a sincere answer to Jay’s question. In turn we will ask on of him, one Florence Reece wrote in the 1930s and still matters now, “Which Side Are You On?”

If your community organization / musical group / education group would like to join us, please email music at nycga dot net.

UPDATE: Here’s a tweet response from OWS supporter Russell Simmons

Russell SimmonsVerified ‏@UncleRUSH:

J. @occupywallstreet is not a blanket indictment of the rich its an indictment of a system that let’s the rich bribe R government, luv u

 

- – - – - -

[FROM OCCUPY GUITARMY TUMBLER SEPT 9, 2012]

Arts Cluster 4: Sunday Aug 26, 7pm

Occupy Wall Street Arts Cluster 4

Dear OWS Arts Groups and people!

A reminder about the next meeting of the Arts Cluster happening this
coming Sunday, August 26  at 7 PM at the Commons  388 Atlantic Avenue in
Brooklyn.

For those new to this list, this is the initiative to bring together the
creative community of OWS… an opportunity to share information,
resources, grievances and sympathies that can strengthen all of our
participation in the huge work at hand.

Some of the topics discussed at past meetings included plans for the
Guitarmy, A Big Project, Occupy the Empty Space’s upcoming 10
minute play festival
, various puppet projects, core issues of artist entitlement, diversity and other arts actions.

What we have on the table for this meeting (as well as other topics
which you bring!) are follow ups on some of the above and continuing
discussions about subway performances leading up to September 17,
general plans for September 17 itself, and hopefully learning some songs
(including the police code of honor)! Please let me know if there is
anything which really needs to be added to the agenda followup before we
go to new topics in Open Space.

I don’t seem to have the notes from the July meeting (if someone has
them can they please (re)send) but here are the ones from June to get a
sense
.

Four easy requests:

1) It will be a potluck, so please bring some food or liquids to share
if you can!

2) Please bring ideas about what to discuss! After we do followups, the
rest of the meeting, we will use the Open Space model, so that everyone
hopefully has has the opportunity to bring their priorities to the
group.

3)Please let us know you’re coming, and invite your friends!   We have
set up a Facebook invite as well that you can use.
https://www.facebook.com/events/111889772291554/

4)If there is something that needs to be on the followup list (anything
I’ve left out) or anything that needs to urgently be on the agenda
before we go to Open Space, please contact me beforehand and let me
know.

Again that’s Sunday August 26 at 7 PM (will end at 10pm) at The Commons
388 Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn.

Hope to see you there!

Morgan and the Arts Cluster team

TONITE: Arts Cluster 3, @7pm

Occupy Wall Street - Arts Cluster 3, Sunday July 15, 7pm - The Commons Brooklyn

We cordially invite you to the third meeting of the Arts Cluster! initiative to bring together the creative community of OWS. We think that this opportunity to share information, resources, grievances and sympathies can strengthen all of our participation in the huge work… at hand.

The first Arts Cluster was in April. More than 60 people attended, representing 20+ creative projects from the occupy universe, as well as OWS sympathetic creatives who wanted to get plugged in. We learned more about one another’s work, had discussions about common challenges, and shared needs and resources. It was pretty great, but it was just the beginning. The group agreed that we should try to meet bi-monthly and the second meeting was held on June 10th where an amazing range of subjects were discussed https://docs.google.com/document/d/1SXxiMZp5Q7OnRg3aJkE-zaVnRxwQcZHuXNlxDe9h_HU/edit

We then decided to go for #3 so PLEASE COME with a topic you’d like to introduce to discussion!

Three easy request:

1) It will be a potluck, so please bring some food to share if you can!
2) Please bring ideas about what to discuss! For much of the meeting, we will use the Open Space model, so that everyone has the opportunity to bring their priorities to the group.
3)Please let us know you’re coming, and invite your friends!

FACEBOOK INVITE:
http://www.facebook.com/events/408769279160268