Principles, Values, and Goals

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ARTS & CULTURE WORKING GROUP :

1) Together, we will be co-creating this statement (call it a minifesto, declaration, etc) to define the purpose and role of this working group. This document is to aid in the brainstorming process. (We don’t need to stick to this format, but we’ve drafted it this way to help us organize our thoughts.)
2) We will work virtually (here) and actually: next mtg Sunday 10/16 8pm 60 Wall St. Atrium
3) Feel free to add anything anywhere.

‘STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES, GOALS,  & FUNCTIONS’

I. Principles

II. Goals

III. Functions
IV. Topics for Discussion

I. PRINCIPLES

Description: A list of the principles which define participation in this movement. (Let’s try and break those down into specific practices. They are not just helpful for us, but they will also help us form guidelines for outside groups).

Principle:         Specifics:
horizontalism
collaboration        between disciplines, skill sets and a range of experience
participation        anyone can participate
inclusiveness         sharing of specialized skills;
transparency        our process is clear and open for all to see and understand
agency
autonomy         non-cooptation;
humanization
solidarity
emancipation
sustainability
accountability
empowerment
peacefulness

We Commit to: We will NOT Exploit

II. GOALS

Our goal is to inspire, support and participate in the creation of cultural work that…

  • AMPLIFIES the movement’s messaging
  • INSPIRES people to join
  • EMPOWERS people to improve their own lives
  • MOBILIZES people to take action
  • EXPOSES specific economic justice issues
  • ENVISIONS the alternative future we are building
  • ASSERTS the crucial role that art plays in movement building
  • ENACTS the guiding principles mutually decided on by A&C members
  • BRING joy, humor, and levity into the movement

 

III. FUNCTIONS

Description: These are the practical functions of the working group. Creators are free to initiate projects autonomously as part of the #occupy movement in accordance with our movement’s principles. However, the A&C group provides the following functions to support creators and the movement as a whole.

  • Popularize the principles of our movement
  • Disseminate guidelines for other groups to work in concert with these principles if they wish to endorse our movement
  • Create a regular time & space for artists to meet each other & find collaborators
  • Propose projects to the A&C group in order to receive GA funding and other support
  • Help arrange events and activities in physical occupation spaces
  • ‘Legitimize’ projects through ‘official’ A&C endorsement, website access, calendar listing, etc.
  • Create Zucotti Park booth and information resources
  • Record, catalogue and archive artistic production
  • Using the arts for mobilization

IV. SUGGESTIONS FOR ADD’L TOPIC AREAS
- Space: What constitutes an occupation? What are the implications of renting a space for programming in relationship to the larger goals of the occupation?
- Ethical behavior of institutions A&C works with or reaches out to. (how do we negotiate relationships and direct actions (ie. say new museum wants to host a talk about OWS, and someone wants to occupy it?)
- Money. What are the parameters for venues we work with? ie. how do we avoid another No Comment contract scenario. Are all artists that participate in occupy shows expected to donate to OWS? Is there a way we can carve out some parameters that make sense and benefit all parties’ time?
How can we use the influence of European nations who offer a Stipendium for all artists so that they can live as artists even without patrons, funders, commercial galleries fronting money, etc.
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- Messaging. How to unify messages across the movement? (is this under functions?)
- How does Arts and Culture respond to the goals that are raised at GA?
- Reclaim public space for art.
- Do we put on non-commercial shows? Proposal to never sell art to raise funds. We need a deeper discussion of the economic structures of art and market, and what we propose in that regard.
- Imagine what a 99% Art world looks like. Consider everything! There are more artists than troops. We can have an army bigger than the government. Lets imagine what is a principled life. What is a principle in good society?
- WPA under FDR. We can envision a country with an army of artists that are supported and their work stimulates that economy.
- Expose the sublime artist in every individual. Appreciate the art in every aspect of life.
- We will not accept the 1% model for art
- Find a way to include the 1%
- Discuss authorship. Celebrity that the 1% relies on.
- Can there be both? Collab and individual are treated with equal respect.
- Communal art? We support each other as a community.
- whole group represents the whole group.
- Copyright? Emphasize copyright.
- Creative Commons? Seems more consistent with the movement.
- We should do more writing. Challenge academia. Writing and publishing ideas is really important.
- Screening night of each others work? Spaces for critique.
- What is democratic art? Person has rights- artists have rights. It has to be discussed in democracy.
- Institutions say what is the greatest art. That has to be challenged.

- Artists deserve a real Wage (living wage) in this society
- Allow a broader range of artists to live off their work

- Creation of an artists union.
- Paul and Frank know about this.
- Freelancers Union?
- Fractured Atlas

- A lot of our conversations are us talking about how to confront inequity. Gan has been going to a lot of occupations- lots of struggle. Focus on the mobilizing ability of the arts. We can be the voice of this larger movement. Save energy and space for this.

- Precedent for this. How artists work within labor organization movements. Posters, songs, music. Artists can have a much greater range of choices.
- Use art to push the boundaries of the inclusivity of the movement.
- Great movements. Artists working as groups together.
-Consider the heinous acquiescence, and blaming the victim mentality, by those in the media, academia, and government to death threats against artists such as Salman Rushdie, Kurt Westergaard, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Lars Vilks, et al. Furthermore, consider the “Blasphemy laws” of Ireland.

function:
Reflect on of existing works of art and the relationships between that work, the “1%,” and the “99%”

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