Arts and Labor Minutes 3/13/12

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Minutes Arts and Labor

Facilitators: Leina & Yates
Stack : Blithe
Minutes : Bill

Announcements – Will only post initials

N – 25th March FT. Greene Park Arts Assembly. Solidarity meeting to come up with ideas for a big May Day thing. Anybody who wants to be in facilitation for that join in.

K – OWS Arts and Labor unpaid internships google group. Meeting next Wednesday? Looking to target a few job listing boards. Thinking of creating a testimonial board for unpaid interns, like the 99% blog. Trying to use the term 6 points from the NYFA letter. Starting a summer campaign and a broader campaign for mass back pay.

LB – Radical Arts Meeting – made banners, meeting in 3 weeks. Making signs and propaganda.

BR – report back on Occupy Museums art fair action. 2 days. Felt soft 1st day. 2nd day they tried to make it more like a zuccotti park space. Had more interaction creating a ‘space’ within the fair. Mixed feelings.

Some random dude is trying to record or film or something.

G- Sotheby’s meeting. Union tried to take concessions if Sotheby’s would say they’d always have unions. Really turn up the heat. ‘Global Spring’ May 2nd is the post-impressionist sale, and there will be 6 actions leading up to May 2nd. Trying to shut down the block around Sotheby’s on May 2nd. mass arrest situation. Teamsters will block loading docks. Going to FUCK with Sotheby’s. Going to disrupt tomorrow’s auction. James Murdoch is on the board of Sotheby’s.
We are going to be escalating, can Arts and Labor release a letter to escalate. May 9th is the biggest sale.
Projected arrestability levels? So far we’ve been escorted out.
This is an infiltration, don’t wear buttons.

AB – Report back on the talk at Old School. Put out consensused upon material, some sense of hostility. Turned out to be pretty positive.

Dude skating around in a chair.

MC – Plus brigades is meeting and trying to develop direct action events, meeting on Saturdays. Direct Action will start weekly marches. Friday will be the kick off for spring training. Brigade of ‘radical cheerleaders’ This is happening at 3 ish on Friday.. (not sure where) Bank of America event happening.

some dude – i’m solidarity, so ‘we all don’t feel like individuals’..

A – Commons Coalition, March 24th at a community center in Queens. Then heading to Immigrant Movement International. Commons invited to speak. Happening before Occupy Town Square.

Wall St to Main Street, from Arts and Culture, an arts festival happening in the Catskills. Presenting April 22nd on a Sunday. Alt-Economies teach-in on Saturday (21st) before that in the Catskills. Taking place inside of the People’s collection.

NYC community garden coalition, June 1 – 3rd, unconference. Will be distributed throughout all the community gardens. OWS food justice, sustainability, food cluster is working on this as well. Antonio will be out town during this.

D – the community board voted to approve a project that watered down a community sculpture garden. Publicity was positive about the community sculpture garden. Marlborough Chelsea is meeting on March
AB – Arts and Labor is having a teach-in with Gran Fury.


AB – happier to try and stop having labor at FRIEZE.
D – stop working? the message is not coming from labor. Just came from union meeting, and union is not using ‘stop working’ language.
G – Union cannot request another union assist another union.
B – We did talk to a number of people working the fair, and it wasn’t an open space. There was a lot of contentious interactions. There’s a lot of personalities swirling around the fairs.
YA – are you suggesting we ask art laborers not work Frieze?
AB – focusing on workers not working.
YA – they need money, don’t sabotage.
MC- May 1st strategy
AB – table it, to discuss it? Formalized proposal?
CL – Cheney would have to propose something, but we could get the $500. How can Arts and Labor get the money.

Arts Cluster

A – seeding the idea of an arts cluster. Arts group meeting to see what’s happening. different people feel like it might be worthwhile. It would have to be intergroup proposal. Can Arts and Labor be present?
Matt- there is a call for the 25th pop up, a cluster-like thing.

Gran Fury –
AB – text for Gran Fury teach-in. Teach-in is a week from Friday.

Sotheby’s – Discussion
G – Do we want to escalate? May 2nd, mass arrest situation. Could A&L produce a letter to announce the escalation? We do have activist investors at Sotheby’s who will short the Sotheby’s stock. This creates investor pressure. Use the system against Sotheby’s. We can get this reported in the financial news. “You should not sleep at night?” We would like to create

D – Is there anybody working, or the group gauged any reaction? Asked them about Occupy Museums invading HRPTrust, Donna Taylor told Sotheby’s she would resign from the board.

G- Sotheby’s told the unions to go fuck themselves. Sotheby’s thinks the unions will just go away when the union’s health benefits expire. We will go as long the movement lasts, which could be 10 – 12 years.

D – There were a lot of cops. Enormous amount of police at Reed St. “We are afraid they…

B – this seems like a good move to work on a letter with Occupy Sotheby’s. Strategy, how we are working together as allies.

MC-is that proposal?

AB – can we reach consensus on agreeing to actually do this? We’ve gotten away from this important topic. David was coming from Teamsters.

L – I’d like to move forward with this.

M – What does that mean ‘trusting’ this letter?

L – this is an Arts and Labor letter.

AA – ethos..but it’s very much to our benefit to come up with a statement and support an escalation. we are for super extreme langauge. This is a good strategy. ‘wildest nightmares’

D – the national press references occupy. Publications mention occupy wall street.

A – What is the voice of alt-econ/union group?
AB – the union group is still trying to figure out if they want to be in Arts and Labor. Still meeting with union groups. They don’t have an initiative yet.

A – is anything happening? It was a sort of secretive group..

AA – seemed like an interesting project, but don’t know much. It’s an interesting research project. I don’t know, survey was a good attempt to gather information, but doesn’t have any legs to be distributed.

G – you should think about supporting Occupy Wall St and the unions, esp since the Unions are handcuffed.

Outreach –

B – had a hard time finding her way into the group. Felt shut out, she was involved. Keep bridges going .

N – Polar of the discussion, of trying to protect people’s anonymity. Spokespeople. People who are not going lose jobs. People willing to be a public face. “I can’t speak for the group but..” there are certain situations that require anonymity. Perhaps we have shifted to far in that direction. Gauge levels of willingness to go public.

L – Super vocal about being in Arts and Labor. I want to take a break. I feel OK saying I am in Arts and Labor. Iffy about group dynamic. Willing to be a face…allow places for new comers to step in.

LS – There are plenty of opportunities to speak for arts and labor without telling your name. It was stressy getting information together. Solidarity, all information is preconsensed to distribute. For basic distribution.

I – I’ve brought this up for the past three months., free account for attachments.

G – anonymously making statements? Outreach? if there aren’t people who are worried about being found out, you should be free to speak as an individual.

B – we had an outreach break out group. maybe we want to return to that kind of idea. I am totally willing to commit to it. SHould get some people together to power out some logistical stuff.

Proposals –

BY – Can we document the Sotheby’s/Whitney event on the website.

MP – PUtting approval on mass action for Teamsters. Second, create a committee to draft a letter.

AB – Approve a blurb for gran fury

B – create a news section, doesn’t need consensus, like an RSS feed.
2nd- formal consensus on the 1 day action retreat. Annie, Lara, and nicole have expressed interest in helping out with this. Part picnic, facilitated discussion. Outside facilitator.

MP – Arts cluster/building solidarity between arts groups. Arts and Labor to echo the call for an arts assembly on March 25th.
• open call in the arts
• discuss our participation in May Day
• Build solidarity
• Plan outreach for people without plans for May Day.

A – the arts cluster is a call for an affinity group to come together. Does Arts and Labor want to help out with that?

D – Action at marlborough chelsea

Proposals Consensus

B –
can we revisit process


MC – temp check

No process

• There was consensus through a temperature check on the Whitney documenting proposal. which was “We agree to put the documents on the website, but the document needs to be edited.

I – Google group protocol.

LS – Time should be given to read the documents, see the photos.

BY – something about editing the Whitney letter and

MC – We moved forward about wanting to put something on the website.

B – it wasn’t a consensus process.

AA – it’s great we consensed on putting something on the site. More discussion is necessary.

AB – we consensed on the MoMA action as well. but it hasn’t happened.

L – the MoMA action is going around.

MS – I don’t want my picture on there (not sure if that’s MoMA or Whitney action)

D – anxious to see a report of an action. This is late, losing momemtum.

MC – point of process…

Consensus on BY’s proposal –

• BY – I propose “By friday 5pm, with any edits, I would like to post the whitney action documents”

AA – granting him final editor control.

Reached consensus on Ben’s proposal.

AB – “We are going to publish a blurb about the gran fury teachin on the website”

B – FA Add the arts and labor blurb and address to the press release

Reached consensus!

B’s proposal – “Can we add a news section where we can post things that are not officially Arts and Labor?”

D – ? why not on the site?

B – we don’t post non-arts and labor written stuff.

M – would have to be on a separate page?

A – there is a tech group that is understaffed. We need input. We also have tech-teach in.

B’s proposal passes.

B’s second proposal – a DA retreat. There is a doodle to fill out availabilty. April 1st is winning.
“Can we have a long retreat, a day, that is partially fun, to discuss Direct Action retreat? I will redo the doodle poll?”

N – FA – non-meeting thing. If is super heated, can we talk as a group?

B – needs to be separate from the meeting.

A – April 1st is an issue for arts cluster.

K – What is it? sounds like a day for expressing grievances.

N – Thinks this is really important. I feel like we need to do this as a group. We should just have a four hour meeting.

Consensus reached on Blithe’s second proposal.

LS – has docs about process. /this is not a proposal/

G’s Proposal – “Arts and Labor forms a committee to write a letter.”
“Arts and Labor formally gives stamp of approval for further Sotheby’s actions” AB gets the follow up on that

reached consensus on both G’s items.

MP- “Arts and Labor echoes the call for the arts assembly on March 25th at Fort Greene Park around May Day issues and some from Arts and Labor will be there.”

N – is it on the website?

MP – Yes

A – someone from Arts and Labor should be there.

reached consensus

A – “Would arts and labor want to participate in an arts cluster? and help facilitate?”

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