Artist in Residence: Political Office

When a local/national journalist, Ross Barkan, announced he was running for State Senate in my neighborhood (a swing district), I did some research and decided to support him. When he got an office for his campaign, I pitched my idea to be the Artist in Residence in the space and this undertaking became Political Office.

First actions: make a big print, bring furniture, clean - I am a fan of the maintenance art of Mierle Laderman Ukeles.

In addition to making my own large print of lilies, I also invited Alyssa Casey and Salim Hashbini to show their work on the opposing wall - that I named the Visiting Artist Wall.

I came up with two slogans ("Tyranny Is No Joke," "The Future Belongs to Those Who Organize") and started spreading these throughout the space.

Political Office: The Lamp (The Future Belongs to Those Who Organize.)
Political Office: The Mobile (Tyranny Is No Joke)
The Mobile (Tyranny is No Joke), detail.
Political Office: The Window Tweet

I made large prints from screenshots of Ross' tweets and hung them in the windows to catch the eyes of passerbys.

I wanted to turn this space into a resting area for campaign staff and volunteers - but it was structurally unsound.

The Planter
The Rear Window
The Wall Clock (The Future Belongs to Those Who Organize.)
The Fundraiser Outfit
Solidarity Space, 2018-2019

Ross' campaign did not make it past primaries, and I made a different print and created a new space for what would briefly function as an activist community place.

John Tomac holding a framed print of his New Yorker cover, Liberty's Flameout.

I also invited my neighbor and fellow bike activist, John Tomac, to show his work on the Visiting Artist Wall. I made selections from his extensive body of work and then made large prints.

Opening night, Solidarity Space
My large prints of John Tomac's work

Opening night coincided with me returning from presenting at National Women's Studies Association and being able to bring a lot of donated books from the book fair there.

Henry Stewart

I organized a movie screening of Saturday Night Fever, with Henry Stewart introducing the movie and its relationship to Bay Ridge history.

Artist in Residence in a Political Space, User Manual

This is my User Manual for other artists, to use as they wish for entering a political space - incorporating some of the actions, all of them or add to them.