CENTER FOR ARTISTIC ACTIVISM — CREATIVE COMMONS BY-NC-SA

Artistic Activism Blog

Steve Lambert talks C4AA at Eyeo 2017

Created: 05 Nov 2017

Steve Lambert talked about the origins of the C4AA and tried to recruit the audience to be artistic activists at the 2017 EYEO Fest.   https://vimeo.com/232656878 Did you know they figured out how to meet Elton John? You can find out how in the ...

The 5 Moral Foundations

Created: 17 Aug 2017

The 5 Moral Foundations Social and cultural psychologists have identified these “innate and universally available psychological systems [as] the foundations of ‘intuitive ethics.’” Unique, cultural moralities are built on these foundations. As artistic activists, these ideas can help us ...

Creative Mapping Exercise

Created: 17 Aug 2017

Creative Mapping Excerpted from the upcoming book How To Win: The Art of Activism by Stephen Duncombe and Steve Lambert To get where we want to go we need a map. And because artistic activism combines both arts and activism that map is a multifaceted one, with different paths leading to our ...

Ideas To Action Exercise

Created: 17 Aug 2017

Ideas to Action People move through multiple stages when changing their behavior. We’ll practice developing tactics to address one step. STEP 1: Roll the Dice 4 minutes Say hello and get to know each other. Roll your dice Exposure (roll again) Attention Interest ...

Imagining Utopia

Created: 10 Aug 2017

In order to change the world we live in we need to be able to imagine the world we desire. Through the Imagining Utopia workshop, CAA faculty work with groups – ranging from elementary school students to seasoned grassroots activists – to stimulate their imagination of what could ...

ÆFFICACY

Created: 28 Apr 2017

Effect (v.) “To bring about (an event, a result); to accomplish (an intention, a desire).” Affect (v.) “To have an effect on the mind or feelings of (a person); to impress or influence emotionally; to move, touch.” (Oxford English ...

AXES OF ART AND ACTIVISM

Created: 28 Apr 2017

The terrain of artistic activism and activist art is vast, and there is no one coordinate of success. In order to map some of this landscape we’ve created the following axes where one might situate particular practices and thereby better determine ...

REPORT ON INTERVIEWS WITH TRAINERS & FIELD-DEFINING ORGANIZATIONS

Created: 28 Apr 2017

REPORT ON INTERVIEWS WITH TRAINERS & FIELD-DEFINING ORGANIZATIONS Download: Report on Interviews with TrainersField-Defining Organizations March 2017 Background Following the development of a literature review last year on measuring the impact of ...

ÆFFICACY Project

Created: 28 Apr 2017

Measuring the Impact of Artistic Activism AKA “The Æffect Project” In 2015 the C4AA teamed up with George Perlov, former VP of Research at the Ad Council, and currently with George Perlov Consulting,  to study the æffect of artistic activism. ...

ÆFFECT ADVISORY BOARD

Created: 28 Apr 2017

Artistic Activism Efficacy Advisory Board   Kenneth Bailey — Founder, Design Studio for Social Intervention Luis Camnitzer — Independent artist James Chung — Founder, Reach Advisers Brett Davidson — Program Director, Open Society Foundations Kathy ...

LITERATURE REVIEW

Created: 28 Apr 2017

Center for Artistic Activism Measuring the Impact of Artistic Activism Literature Review Report DRAFT March 25, 2016   Background Social change is hard. Over the years, social issue campaigners and activists have employed a variety of marketing and ...

Join Actipedia

Created: 28 Apr 2017

Actipedia is an open-access, user-generated database of creative activism. It’s a place to read about, comment upon, and share experiences and examples of how activists and artists are using creative tactics and strategies to challenge power and offer visions of a better society. Actipedia ...

Press: We Make Money Not Art on C4AA and Artistic Activism

Created: 19 Apr 2017

Yesterday, We Make Money Not Art featured our webinars and one of our favorite examples of truly artistic activism, the occupation of Alcatraz Island by Native American activists in 1969. We talk about this in our trainings as one example of fully realized creative activism that incorporates ...

What Would Jesus Do? (as a Creative Activist)

Created: 14 Apr 2017

By C4AA Co-Founder Stephen Duncombe My proselytizing here is of a political rather than religious nature. It isn’t the divine figure of Christ I am interested in but the purely historical Jesus, a radical Mediterranean Jewish peasant building a revolutionary movement two millennia ago. Jesus ...

Artistic Action: Sex Worker Rights in Dublin

Created: 22 Mar 2017

As part of our Arts Action Academy in December 2016 in Dublin, sex workers, artists and activists created and performed this creative action to raise awareness about, and fight against, laws that criminalize sex workers. All of this was conceived and implemented by the Academy participants in ...

5 Ways to Up Your Artistic Action Game

Created: 27 Feb 2017

Here are 5 things you can do if you want to make change in the world: 1. Steal from the Past Borrow from successful creative movements (video). Make time to be inspired by others (check out Actipedia). 2. Know How to Manipulate Change Minds Use cognitive and behavioral science to ...

Beatrice Glow

Created: 15 Feb 2017

It’s a long wave. I think of everything as being interdependent or part of an ecosystem, philosophically and biologically. There are urgent moments of crisis where the waves are crashing on the land, which are the moments that activists quickly rise to. But then there’s the long waves, behind ...

Apply for the Johannesburg Art Action Academy

Created: 14 Feb 2017

Are you an artist or creative practitioner interested in challenging public perceptions about sex work in South Africa? If so, please apply to attend our Art Action Academy in May! In collaboration with SWEAT – Sex Workers Education & Advocacy Taskforce and Sonke Gender Justice, we invite ...

Imagine You Are A Superhero

Created: 27 Jan 2017

This is one of the favorite exercises in our trainings. It's a good place to start if you're not sure where to put your energy. 1) Imagine that you are a superhero. Yes, a superhero. Like all superheroes you have special powers – we’ll get to that soon. You also have an outfit. You are very ...

Artistic Activism at the UN

Created: 26 Jan 2017

Steve and Steve were at the United Nations this week, where they gave a presentation to the Arts and Culture Exchange of the UN Development Program. Ostensibly about “new communications strategies to sell old ideas, like the UN”, the Steve’s presentation introduced the audience of largely UN ...

Elliot Crown

Created: 23 Jan 2017

Images operate the same way that memories do; images have this deep-seated attachment to your mind and I like to think that the images ingrain themselves into people...It really makes them want to stop for a minute and read the article. And hopefully it’s not a terribly biased article. And ...

Do petitions do anything?

Created: 28 Dec 2016

An article on the New York Times today looks at Change.org and whether online petition campaigns are truly effective. The answer is a qualified yes. “No president is going to do an about-face on a major policy because of 20,000 signatures,” he wrote. “But coupling that petition with other ...

The Creators Project Recommends C4AA to Artists

Created: 20 Dec 2016

The fantastic Creators Project just posted a new story on us: "Need More Activism in Your Art? Look No Further Than This Center." A lot of artists might be thinking about how to incorporate more political activism into their practices right about now, and if you’re one of them then you’re in ...

Give the Gift of Artistic Activism

Created: 13 Dec 2016

Give your friends or family a can of Whoop Ass or Canned Do Spirit! Your gift will support effective & creative activist training to counteract intolerance and fear in 2017. After you donate, click on "Return to Merchant" on the PayPal site, and you will be directed to a page where you ...

Federico Hewson

Created: 05 Dec 2016

[T]here’s socially engaged art, there’s socially engaged business, and there can also be socially engaged horticulture; flowers working for different social issues, whether that’s fundraising or awareness or development. Federico Hewson is a writer, curator, and activist currently based in ...

C4AA’s Steve Lambert talks Artistic Activism on Al Jazeera

Created: 04 Dec 2016

Steve Lambert was a panelist in-studio on Al Jazeera’s The Stream on Monday and Tuesday’s show. It aired internationally and the topic was “Art and Activism.” He was a guest with Molly Crabapple, Annya San, and Rajkamal Kahlon. You can watch archived versions of the shows below or on the Al ...

What we’ve been reading this week

Created: 14 Nov 2016

Donald Trump Will be President: This is What we do Next "...let’s exhale and let go of our fear, so we can think as clearly as we can about who we are and what we’re trying to accomplish. We can start by sharing whatever educated guesses we have about what we should do for the next few ...

How to intervene if you witness Islamophobic harassment

Created: 12 Nov 2016

Artist Maeril made this illustrated guide a few months ago, but it’s now more relevant than ever. You can find more of Maeril’s work on her Tumblr and Twitter. via Boing ...

Most creative election ad of 2016?

Created: 26 Oct 2016

We don't agree with his policies, but this ad is funny and very effective: Gerald Daugherty, a Republican county commissioner in the Austin-area Travis County, has produced one of the best ad-spots of the season, depicting him as a politics-obsessed public servant whose long-suffering, ...

FiNK

Created: 11 Oct 2016

Visual appreciation for my art is wanted I suppose, but not totally necessary...Ideally, I want my audience to react in some way either positively or negatively to my art and either a smile or smirk will keep me happy as either way I have gotten an audience response to my art. I suppose the ...

Felicia Young

Created: 29 Sep 2016

  My theory is one of creative collaboration and joyous affirmation -- activating change through the inspirational power of the arts and affecting the individual on a deep emotional level, which can be imperceptible, as well as through more visible and public, celebratory and collective ...

Diana Arce

Created: 01 Sep 2016

[T]he change has to come from socialization. It’s the way that people are being taught to interact with other people. I don’t think it’s something that’s going to come quickly; I think it’s a generational issue. If we do enough right things now and teach these younger generations of people ...

André Leipold

Created: 11 Aug 2016

It’s not that we have a vision necessarily, but we try to poke holes in the scenery - a scenery which is built up by the politicians, by the media. They are playing theatre, too, with our lives and with our destinies. We are making a counter-theatre to go against theirs. So, by poking holes in ...

Amin Husain

Created: 29 Jul 2016

“Art actions relevant for today come from a place of vulnerability and radical love, from fighting back. They push back and it creates a little space, and that little space could be something more meaningful, if only for a second. And then you do it again. And it gives you that breath of fresh ...

Joey Juschka

Created: 25 Jul 2016

“[My] intention is to raise the topic, and on one side, be funny, and on the other side be really serious underneath; to find a way into people’s minds in a way that isn’t confrontational, because then most people would go, “Oh yeah? You want to confront me? You’re aggressive! Why should I ...

Familiar vs. Novel – Everything is a Remix

Created: 19 May 2016

First, if you've never seen Everything is a Remix, go watch it now. It's a great primer on creativity, originality, and copyright. Recently Kirby Ferguson posted a new installment about the new Star Wars movie, The Force Awakens. https://vimeo.com/167069783 Towards the end he makes a point ...

Bar-B-Que Utopia

Created: 15 May 2016

Stephen Duncombe & Steve Lambert “The Good Life” was the mantra of the United States in the 1950s. The country had emerged from a devastating economic depression and a brutal world war into a era of seemingly unbound plenty. The economy was in high gear from the war: there were new ...

Ron Goldberg

Created: 24 Apr 2016

Going back to the early days at the March on Washington...to watch people respond to us as we walked by was...people just lit up. It was 6-7 years into the epidemic by then and people were just looking for something to do that was positive. I remember chanting: “we’ll never be silent again!” ...

Andrew Boyd

Created: 15 Mar 2016

“I think there is something affirming of our humanity in culture - in the community building side of things. A connective tissue, quilting all of us together and creating meaning as you strive for these outcomes. That is different from operational politics - when you’re just trying to do turn ...

How do you measure the impact of socially engaged art? 

Created: 25 Feb 2016

In our new Æfficacy project we’ve been working with our colleague George Perlov, thanks to funding from The Open Society Foundations and The Compton Foundation to begin to answer that question. As a first step, we’re conducting a literature review on the topic and George will be spotlighting ...

The Axes of Art and Activism

Created: 19 Feb 2016

What happens when 4 of the greatest minds in Æfficacy get together and brainstorm around creative activism? The Axes of Arts and Activism, that's what! This is Artistic Activism Technology (AAT) so advanced even we aren't sure what it means yet. But to be clear - when it is ready we'll know ...

Avram Finkelstein

Created: 11 Feb 2016

“That’s the thing about history, you know, history is capital. The reason why I think the distinctions are worth knowing about is while communal responses, political responses, like ACT UP are incredibly valuable and noteworthy, there’s also power in the individual voice. It was six gay men, ...

And what do I do now? Using Data Visualization for Social Change

Created: 23 Jan 2016

Last week, the C4AA's Steve Lambert attended the Responsible Data Forum on Data Visualization. In this article, Lambert discusses how data visualizations for social change can leverage emotion to achieve objectives. Those who visualize data can be reluctant to sully themselves in the messy ...

Koch Quits!

Created: 22 Jan 2016

Two days ago, in a big win for cultural institutions everywhere, it was announced that David H. Koch has resigned in his role on the board of the American Museum of Natural History. You may be familiar with Koch, the 'the fourth richest person in America' the billionaire who has given ...

Guerilla Girls on Colbert!

Created: 20 Jan 2016

The anonymous feminist art collective Guerrilla Girls appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert Wednesday night and talked about gender inequality in the art world. The collective is known for wearing gorilla masks and using the names of deceased female artists as monikers. Kathe, ...

Play the Game!

Created: 31 Aug 2015

In the interests of efficacy, a great deal of politics in recent years has been professionalized. Experts devise policies, lobbyists make the case to politicians, politicians fight for legislation, and ...

P.T.S.D. ACTION MAN! PARALYZED ACTION MAN! DEAD ACTION MAN!

Created: 13 Aug 2015

https://vimeo.com/131462825 http://battlefieldcasualties.co.uk/ Great use of comedy as an entry point for veterans issues. A Veterans for Peace UK film, directed by Price James, written by Darren Cullen, featuring Matt ...

Awareness | 99% Invisible

Created: 13 Aug 2015

99% Invisible did a 20m piece on the AIDS Awareness ribbon last month. The ribbon was a project of an art collective, Visual AIDS. The story is well done and worth your time - and this is coming from the guy who hates "awareness." Source: Awareness | 99% Invisible By the late 1980s, AIDS had ...

Reclaim the suits!

Created: 10 Aug 2015

Back in 2002, Center Co-Director Stephen Duncombe took part in a “Rant-a-Thon” held as a fund raiser for the direct action protest group Reclaim the Streets at the KGB bar in New York ...

The Donald gets duped: Harvard Lampoon tricks Trump with phony endorsement — and he’s not happy about it | Salon

Created: 05 Aug 2015

The Donald’s been duped. In what’s been called a “a prank of presidential proportions,” the staff at Harvard University’s humor magazine, the Harvard Lampoon, targeted Donald Trump for their latest prank in a longstanding rivalry with the University’s daily student newspaper, The Harvard ...

Edward Snowden monument placed (and removed) in New York City

Created: 07 Apr 2015

There’s a Massive, Illicit Bust of Edward Snowden Stuck to a War Monument in Brooklyn While most people slept, a trio of artists and some helpers installed a bust of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden in Brooklyn on Monday morning. The group, which allowed ANIMAL to exclusively document the ...

What are your Super Powers?

Created: 10 Mar 2015

It can sometimes be easier to focus on our weaknesses than our strengths - but like every Superhero, there might be some talents laying dormant just waiting for us to discover them, or that we already use, but don't give ourselves credit for. Here's a little tip we found from corporate ...

Steve’s Super Hero Exercise

Created: 10 Mar 2015

Here's a great exercise to help realize your inner superhero! Super Hero Exercise Curriculum by Steve Lambert Introduction The purpose of this exercise is to help young and old discover: they have things they care about they want to communicate to others art is a form of ...

ACTIPEDIA REVISITED: THE PINK CHADDI CAMPAIGN

Created: 08 Mar 2015

It's International Women's Day! So this week, we're taking a look at a really powerful piece of collective creative activism that managed to have a real material impact on a very troubling and potentially violent situation. The Pink Chaddi Campaign was an action devised by the “Consortium ...

ACTIPEDIA REVISITED: WOMEN ON WAVES

Created: 28 Feb 2015

So this week we're doffing our caps to the work of Women on Waves, who worked with our good friends at Yes Lab to create the www.diesalforwomen.com website 'Misopolis', a fabricated fashion brand which claimed to provide free abortion pills to its female workers in order to set them free and ...

Formula for Success

Created: 23 Feb 2015

The formula is quite simple: if attained aeffect matches desired aeffect, then we’ve succeeded. If it doesn’t we’ve failed. If attained aeffect comprises a fraction of desired aeffect, then we are on the right path. Expressed as a mathematical formula (that we just made up) it might look like ...

ACTIPEDIA REVISITED: McDONALD’s VIDEOGAME

Created: 19 Feb 2015

This week we're taking a look at the McDonald's Videogame, where you own and operate a McDonald's restaurant. In the game you have the choice to try to operate ethically or make decisions like using genetically modified soy or administering bovine growth hormone. If you go the ethical route, ...

Actipedia: Pigasus for President

Created: 17 Feb 2015

CHICAGO At the Democratic National Convention in Chicago in 1968, the Yippies (Youth International Party) nominated a pig for president, with the campaign pledge: “They nominate a president and he eats the people. We nominate a president and the people eat him.” This porcine political ...

ACTIPEDIA REVISITED: PRINCESS HIJAB

Created: 12 Feb 2015

‘My art has nothing to do with religion.’ This week we’re throwing the spotlight on the guerilla street art of Princess Hijab. Princess Hijab détournes advertising in public spaces: superimposing black veils onto the iconography of popular culture. ‘The Hijab is very powerful, not just ...

ACTIPEDIA REVISTED: PRO-CHOICE TROLLING

Created: 06 Feb 2015

From the vaults of Actipedia this week we're looking at a subtle way of subverting your local store to do your messaging for you! When Hobby Lobby, the US craft store, filed a lawsuit against a federal mandate requiring employers to provide insurance coverage for contraceptives Jasmine Shea ...

Red, White, and Beard

Created: 27 Jan 2015

"In response to stereotypes and intolerance, one man -- with a flowing beard and bright blue turban -- dashes  around the Big Apple in a Captain America uniform." Learn more about the project by visiting: ...

24 pieces of life advice from Werner Herzog – via Kottke.org

Created: 24 Jan 2015

Paul Cronin's book of conversations with filmmaker Werner Herzog is called Werner Herzog - A Guide for the Perplexed. On the back cover of the book, Herzog offers a list of advice for filmmakers that doubles as general purpose life advice. Always take the initiative. There is nothing wrong ...

Call for Applications: School for Creative Activism – Campaigns to Support Sex Work Activism in South Africa

Created: 22 Jan 2015

We're pleased to announce a call for applications to a School for Creative Activism training session taking place this March, in South Africa. "In an open society sex workers should have the same rights to safe working environments as all other workers." (Open Society Foundation) We're ...

Actipedia Revisited: #occupysmallstreet

Created: 22 Jan 2015

This week we're giving a shout out to small-scale activism with the #occupysmallstreet movement. First inspired by a doll-sized action in Siberia, this example has been created by Arts X Activism  from Melbourne, Australia. Signs are made collectively, by regular Occupy Small Street-ers and ...

Letters of Note: Hang on to your hat. Hang on to your hope.

Created: 20 Jan 2015

"Hang on to your hat. Hang on to your hope. And wind the clock, for tomorrow is another day."   --E.B. White Letters of Note provides a snapshot into the faxes, memos, letters, telegrams, and any other fascinating tidbits of correspondence that Shaun Usher can get his hands on. ...

Actipedia revisited: Public Movement – ‘Re-Branding European Muslims’ (2012)

Created: 15 Jan 2015

Each week we'll be calling back to an example of creative activism from our website Actipedia - an open-access, user-generated database of creative activism. This week we'd like to highlight this really powerful piece of arts activism by Public Movement, a Tel Aviv based ‘performative ...

An African’s Message for America

Created: 13 Jan 2015

A volunteer trip abroad has become almost a rite of passage for a certain set of Americans, particularly students. Head over to NYtimes.com for an Op-Doc video profiling a Kenyan activist who has one simple question for them: “Why?”  "Nearly one million people from America volunteer abroad ...

Hell No, We Won’t Go: Outstanding Radical Art And Global Movements in 2014 | KQED Arts

Created: 01 Jan 2015

Great summary of "Outstanding Radical Art And Global Movements in 2014" from Christian L. ...

Sister Corita Kent says get out there and make it happen! (paraphrasing)

Created: 21 Dec 2014

A reminder from Sister Corita Kent & Emerson. Ideas must work through the brains and the arms of good and brave men or they are no better than dreams - ...

A message from EverdayRebellion.net….

Created: 11 Dec 2014

A message from EverdayRebellion.net.... Help us change the world through spreading creative non-violent protest methods on our cross-media platform everydayrebellion.net and support our Kickstarter Crowdfunding campaign to keep Everyday Rebellion alive! Click here to see our Kickstarter ...

New York Times Off Color: Kristina Wong uses humor to talk about race

Created: 04 Dec 2014

Off Color, a video series, highlights artists of color who use humor to make smart social statements about the sometimes subtle, sometimes obvious ways that race plays out in America today. Dating in Los Angeles is not easy. Just ask Kristina Wong, a Chinese-American performance artist and ...

Questions for Planning a Campaign – a worksheet courtesy of the CDC

Created: 01 Dec 2014

Doing some research for our book and I came across this worksheet from the Centers for Disease Control. Those who have taken our workshop will be familiar with some of these ideas. This list of questions can help you get started in knowing what decisions you’ll need to be making as you ...

Restaurant Calorie Labeling and Obesity: Does it Work?

Created: 29 Nov 2014

A 620 calorie Starbucks Venti White Hot Chocolate is over 1/4 your recommended calories for the day1. But would knowing that change what you order? As calories on menus goes nationwide, this New York Times article asks "does it work?" and there are arguments on both sides. “There are very ...

How do people get new ideas?

Created: 02 Nov 2014

On Creativity by Isaac Asimov A recently discovered essay by the great SF writer written back in 1959, giving advice to a think tank working on missile defense projects: "How do people get new ideas?" ON CREATIVITY How do people get new ideas? Presumably, the process of creativity, ...

When NOT to march (or rally)

Created: 03 Oct 2014

When NOT to march (or rally) by Andrew Willis Garces On an ordinary Tuesday evening in April ...

The Ark: Faith Leaders at Climate Change

Created: 02 Oct 2014

CAA had the privilege of working with faith leaders, activists, and community organizers last spring for a collaboration through the Auburn Seminary.  This fall, they turned their dreams into ideas and their ideas into action at NYC's Climate March on September 21, 2014, building their very ...

NYPD ♥s CLIMATE JUSTICE

Created: 22 Sep 2014

Steve Lambert and Victoria Estok approached NYPD officers along the People's Climate March, showed them their sign, and asked if they could take a photo together. See them all Often in political marches, the police and those marching are painted in opposition, but one of the purposes of the ...

The future and why we are terrible at predicting it « You Are Not So Smart

Created: 18 Apr 2014

I am listening to the You Are Not So Smart Podcast and reminded of how often Stephen Duncombe and I encounter these faulty visions of the future. Thing like "We'll never be able to do _______." or "That's just not going to happen." come up in our workshops because we all have such a hard time ...

#ThinkBikes campaign

Created: 20 Mar 2014

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AlGmiHKCDI4 The AA Charitable Trust, part of the U.K.’s Automobile Association made this video as part of their #ThinkBikes campaign not exactly a new concept but this PSA definitely stays with you ...

Raise the River Campaign

Created: 20 Mar 2014

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oySDfoHuIP4 A PSA that uses culture and humor: Raise the River vs. Move the Ocean ...

Follow the Frog by Rainforest Action Network

Created: 13 Mar 2014

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3iIkOi3srLo A great example of using humor and social marketing techniques to make a very effective ...

SARAH SILVERMAN IS VISITED BY JESUS CHRIST

Created: 27 Jan 2014

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ahdR6aHQvMQ Great example of using humor to talk about difficult topics. ...

REFLECTO-CUBE!

Created: 11 Jan 2014

The ukranians are using mirrors and in Europe, they have the Reflecto-Cube! https://vimeo.com/82943565 It’s mentioned in an article “12 Inspired Actions to Outsmart Repressive Situations and Laws” written by CAA pal, Leónidas Martín with Amador ...

Ukranian protesters use mirrors

Created: 03 Jan 2014

EcoLocalizer | News & commentary on sustainability, activism, urban planning, politics, and our ...

Inside The Box: People don’t actually like creativity

Created: 08 Dec 2013

Great article on Slate: In the United States we are raised to appreciate the accomplishments of inventors and thinkers—creative people whose ideas have transformed our world. We celebrate the famously imaginative, the greatest artists and innovators from Van Gogh to Steve Jobs. Viewing the ...

Reflection from Pakistani Participant

Created: 06 Dec 2013

Recently we hosted a group of Pakistani Visual Artists for a short workshop in Creative Activism (Read more about that workshop here). One of the participants, Sehr Jalil Raja,  shared a recent post about her experiences on the trip to New York and DC. To hear all about her discoveries and ...

Activist Art: Does it Work? — from OPEN! Journal

Created: 22 Nov 2013

The first rule of guerilla warfare is to know the terrain and use it to your advantage. The topography on which the activist fights may no longer be the mountains of the Sierra Maestra or the jungles of Vietnam, but the lesson still applies. Today, the political landscape is one of signs and ...

School for Creative Activism, a project of the Center for Artistic Activism — Social Text

Created: 22 Nov 2013

Overview The first rule of guerrilla warfare is to know the terrain and use it to your advantage. No longer does this require navigating the mountains of Cuba with a rifle on one’s back, as today’s political topography is one of symbols and signs, images and expressions. From small ...

Recipe to bust ads …

Created: 21 Nov 2013

German guerrilla street artists use simple recipes to cover fast food ads reminding onlookers that food cooked at home isn't necessarily inconvenient. Read about it ...

Crossed Legs Movement

Created: 31 Oct 2013

Colombian women are enacting a Lysistrata. The sex strike is being called the “crossed legs movement.”  Barbacaos's sex strike will only end when the road is fixed. Barbacaos (small town in southwest Colombia) is accessible only by very poorly maintained dirt road. Apparently a trip to the ...

Narrative, comedy, and a message: The Internet Must Go

Created: 10 Sep 2013

In 2012, market researcher John Wooley was dispatched to help the big ISPs figure out how to sell their vision for a "faster," "cleaner" Internet.  Six months later he produced this report -- and shared it with the world. A great example of using comedy to play the villain, a great narrative, ...

Annie Lennox on creativity: “leave the critic outside the room”

Created: 07 Sep 2013

  "Catch ideas… get them down… leave the critic outside the room, close the door, lock it really ...

IMAGINE there’s no fracking …

Created: 05 Sep 2013

"Don't Frack My Mother" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VfymhAEe-TM In addition to coming together through song/video to send a message to Governor Cuomo this video, Yoko Ono and friends have been busy in other ways as well -- learn about their efforts here  Artists Against ...

Are you an overworked activist?

Created: 30 Aug 2013

"The enemy often tries to make us attempt and start many projects so that we will be overwhelmed with too many tasks, and therefore achieve nothing and leave everything unfinished. Sometimes he even suggests the wish to undertake some excellent work that he foresees we will never accomplish. ...

Border Patrol Body Slam

Created: 13 Aug 2013

In a California lucha libre-style wrestling match, Blue Demon Jr., a self-proclaimed defender of Mexican immigrants, does battle against wrestlers who portray United States border patrol ...

Rights, Demands, and Radical Reimaginings: Art and Labor in the US

Created: 12 Aug 2013

Alexis Clements is running a class on Art and Labor. When: Tuesday evenings, from 7.00-8.30pm Aug 27 – Sep 24, 2013 (5 sessions) Where: Brooklyn, NY (see class reg for full details) Description: In the past century, artists working across disciplines have undertaken a variety of ...

Egyptians Understand Spectacle

Created: 06 Jul 2013

Egypt: President Morsi defies army ultimatum. Now what? | Toronto ...

David Letterman – Environmental Activist, Tim DeChristopher

Created: 30 Jun 2013

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnRwqS25b6o Tim DeChristopher makes an appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman and is able to talk about some really radical ideas in a sensible ...

Bloomberg’s Ramadan Breakfast menu

Created: 26 Jun 2013

Rumor has it that this special menu was distributed outside the Mayor of New York's Ramadan breakfast celebration. It references NYPD's surveillance of innocent NY Muslims, stop and frisk, and excessive violence. (Click to ...

Wealth Inequality in America – YouTube

Created: 12 Jun 2013

Very encouraging that this video has 6.5 million views. Since our idea is so far from reality, how does this change the way we talk about this issue? How do we approach the topic so the people we're talking to don't dig in and defend what they believe to be true? And how does the creator ...

Heavens, Not Havens

Created: 10 Jun 2013

Heavens, Not HavensA short article on the public relations problem around taxes and some ideas for helping ...

Make Your Own Damn Art – Bob and Roberta Smith – documentary trailer – YouTube

Created: 03 Jun 2013

Bob and Roberta Smith: 'It's important to undermine and subvert things' Make Your Own Damn Art [youtube ...

Freedom to Fail, Harvard-Style

Created: 01 May 2013

Even Harvard Business Review gets it: failure is a necessary part of creation and innovation.  This blog post highlights how a few forward-thinking organizations build failure-friendly practices into their structure.  One of our favorites is from DoSomething.org: DoSomething.Org, a nonprofit ...

Making Taxes Visible

Created: 16 Apr 2013

In a recent New York Times editorial, Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton discussed America’s broad distaste for the institution of taxation, a phenomenon that plagues advocates of progressive taxation in this country.  Rather than addressing the historical-political underpinnings of these ...

Tactics and Strategies

Created: 16 Apr 2013

A directory of tactics and strategies for human rights ...

Escrache in Spain

Created: 16 Apr 2013

  The term "escrache" comes from Argentina, where it was coined in in 1995 by the human rights activist group H.I.J.O.S, to condemn the genocides committed by members of the military dictatorship that had been pardoned by Carlos Menem, who was prime minister at the time. When justice ...

Those in Charge

Created: 16 Apr 2013

On August 2012, seven black Mercedes drove through the Gran Vía, one of Madrid´s main streets. This image reminded of a State funeral, or some kind of military or religious parade. On top of each of the luxurious cars, there was an academic-style painting of a person that had been in "in ...

Will changing your Facebook profile picture do anything for marriage equality? | PsySociety, Scientific American Blog Network

Created: 15 Apr 2013

As SCOTUS debates the constitutionality of Proposition 8 and DOMA this week, Facebook users all over the nation have become part of a burgeoning social media trend. Supporters of marriage equality have been changing their profile pictures to the icon on the left, a version of the Human Rights ...

Howitcouldbedifferent.org: A Wikipedia for Social Change

Created: 30 Mar 2013

  Looking for some inspiration for your next creative activist project? Look no further than howitcouldbedifferent.org, which is described as a wikipedia for social change allowing users to post and share visions for a better world and ideas of specific progressive changes they would ...

33 Ways to Stay Creative

Created: 27 Mar 2013

Check out this list of 33 Ways to Stay Creative for small everyday suggestions on how to keep the creative juices flowing:       What would happen if most people followed its recommendations instead of just clicking "like"? How would our society change if schools ...

From the Congo to Panama, Beat Making Labs Creates Sustainable Music Studios in Unlikely Places

Created: 25 Mar 2013

http://youtu.be/_dTk3iiOZS8 When most folks think of Africa, they automatically think of famine, disease, and war. But for those who understand how media works, knows that the Africa  most people think of is only one side of the vastly diverse continent. It started as an experiment: what ...

Comics in Kenya

Created: 22 Mar 2013

We've been in Kenya for the last week, and have been honored to work with talented activists from Uganda, Zimbabwe, and Kenya.  This is the first time the School for Creative Activism has traveled to Africa, and it's been an incredible experience. One of the participants showed us a project ...

Decaying Russian Buildings Transformed into Character Art

Created: 20 Mar 2013

Russian artist Nikita Nomerz art series,   “The Living Wall,” resurrects dilapidated buildings by turning them into pieces of art. In his interview with  Global Street Art, Nikita explains the reasoning behind his series.... I paint in the street, in public spaces, but I do not position ...

Hip Hop for Healthy Eating

Created: 12 Mar 2013

Real Food Justice: From Black Panther Party Roots to Hip Hop Activism, Foodies with Fists Youth attend a "Youth Hip Hop Green Dinners" where they enjoy performances by hip-hop artists and their first vegan ...

Using Art to talk back to Unwanted “Compliments”

Created: 08 Mar 2013

  Posters on a wall on Tompkins Avenue in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, try to make the point that some comments to women aren’t welcome. “These things make you feel like your body isn’t yours,” the artist ...

Crowdsourcing Change through Public Art

Created: 05 Mar 2013

  I Wish This Was began in New Orleans in November 2010. It was inspired by vacant storefronts. There are a lot of them where Candy lives in New Orleans. There are also a lot of people who need and want things. What if we could easily voice what we want, where we want it? How can we ...

Somalia Guerrilla Artists Dare to Paint Reality

Created: 05 Mar 2013

MOGADISHU, Somalia — The guerrilla artists come out in the darkness of the Mogadishu night. Three of them are old hands with a brush, but they've never been out on such a crazy mission at a time when sensible people stay indoors. They gather for work in a converted garage, with a wildly ...

Grace and Gravity – Monumental Work by El Anatsui

Created: 25 Feb 2013

http://youtu.be/5I7XZL9KjFQ "In the exhibition are twelve recent monumental wall and floor sculptures, widely considered to represent the apex of Anatsui’s career. The metal wall works, created with bottle caps from a distillery in Nsukka, are pieced together to form colorful, textured ...

The Sounds of the Spanish Revolution

Created: 24 Feb 2013

After a demonstration, on May 15 2011, around forty people decided to sleep in Puerta del Sol, one of Madrid´s central squares. This was the origin of a complex protest camp, that would take a phenomenon which had its origins in the Arab Spring to the Western World. On that first night, Kamen ...

Creativetime 2012: How to disrupt the financial order with humor, creativity and a dash of mischief

Created: 24 Feb 2013

In Creativetime 2012, artist-activist Leónidas Martín from Enmedio Collective in Spain gives different guidelines on how make protest artistic, effective and ...

Nonprofit Fights Poverty With Poverty | The Onion

Created: 22 Feb 2013

This is from 2006 but somehow stayed relevant. Our crack team of anti-poverty activists is totally devoted to marshalling every resource at our disposal," Lindstrom said as she stood under a flickering light bulb in the office's bathroom and added some water to an old toner cartridge to ...

Pray the Devil Back to Hell

Created: 19 Feb 2013

http://youtu.be/dxEvsj80fsE Pray the Devil Back to Hell chronicles the remarkable story of the courageous Liberian women who came together to end a bloody civil war and bring peace to their shattered country. Thousands of women — ordinary mothers, grandmothers, aunts and daughters, both ...

Photographer Leslie Thomas Wants to Shock You

Created: 19 Feb 2013

Leslie Thomas wants to shock you. She wants to anger you. And above all, she wants you to do something. She’s not talking about run-of-the-mill, “Hey buddy, watch your step” angry or TMZ sleaze shock. She’s talking about the great humanitarian and social crises of our time, like in Darfur, ...

Tedx Talk: “We are all born Artists”

Created: 19 Feb 2013

"There are so many reasons why we can't be, indeed, we're not sure why we should be. We don't know why we should be artists, but we have many reasons why we can't be. Why do people instantly resist the idea of associating themselves with art? Perhaps you think art is for the greatly gifted or ...

Gravity is a Mistake

Created: 15 Feb 2013

The Centrifuge Brain Project from Till Nowak on ...

“You can also define creative intervention as a real move”: Fragments of an interview with Andrew Boyd

Created: 13 Feb 2013

Andrew Boyd describes himself as an “author, activist, and prankster for social change”, involved in campaigns such as Billionaires for Bush or The other 98%. Together with Dave Oswald Mitchell, he recently edited Beautiful Trouble. A toolbox for revolution, a kind of instruction manual for ...

Coco Fusco

Created: 12 Feb 2013

"People don’t like the things that I do. At all. The problem is that I still do them. So it’s kind of like, it would be easy to throw me out for a lot of reasons, and I have gotten bounced. But I’m still working. That’s enough." "It took three hundred years to get rid of slavery and ...

Use Art To Turn The World Inside Out

Created: 12 Feb 2013

http://youtu.be/0PAy1zBtTbw "JR, a semi-anonymous French street artist, uses his camera to show the world its true face, by pasting photos of the human face across massive canvases. At TED2011, he makes his audacious TED Prize wish: to use art to turn the world inside out. Learn more about ...

Digital Media Challenge Offers $100,000 in Prizes For Fresh Ideas on Democracy

Created: 06 Feb 2013

  Looking@Democracy is a national competition offering a total of $100,000 in prize money for short, provocative media submissions designed to spark a national conversation about why government is important to our lives, or how individuals and communities can come together to strengthen ...

Artist Favianna Rodriguez Talks Immigrant Rights And Art’s Role In Politics

Created: 06 Feb 2013

The Huffington Post interviewed artist and activist Favianna Rodriguez about her new documentary "Migration is Beautiful," how she envisions the future role of artists in politics, and what she believes the role of art to be in activism. "Art is uniquely able to speak to our understanding ...

Participation, Not Marginalization: Using People’s Stories for Social Good

Created: 06 Feb 2013

"Maybe sometimes we should be story facilitators and help others tell their own stories instead of doing it for them." Filmmaker Jordan Byron reflects on the power of sharing stories and poses important questions about the ethics that accompany this growing movement. Read the full ...

Moore Exhibit Highlights: Activism’s Beautiful Byproducts

Created: 06 Feb 2013

While provocative works may routinely fill the galleries at Moore College of Art and Design, their latest undertaking, Living As Form (The ...

“The Kiss” in Syria Goes VIRAL

Created: 06 Feb 2013

Syrian artist Tammam Azzam took the twittersphere by storm last week when he posted an image of Gustav Klimt's "The Kiss" superimposed on the facade of a bullet-ridden building in Damascus. The photoshopped image -- which some mistook for an actual street-side mural -- brought the eye of the ...

Event: Direct Action Fashion Show

Created: 04 Feb 2013

Join the Museum of Reclaimed Urban Space for the Direct Action Fashion Show Saturday, 02/09/2013 7:00pm 155 Ave C. ...

Brazil to give $25 monthly culture stipend to workers to go to movies, read books or visit museums

Created: 23 Jan 2013

BRASILIA (AFP).- Despite the economic crisis, Brazil announced Thursday it planned to give workers here a 50-real ($25) monthly stipend for cultural expenses like movies, books or museums. "In all developed countries, culture plays a key role in the economy," Culture Minister Marta Suplicy ...

Black History Month at DS4SI

Created: 18 Jan 2013

If you're in the area, join our friends at the Design Studio for Social Intervention for their series of Black History Month programs, Black Love and the Black Image.  Take advantage of the opportunity to meet some incredible activist-innovators and join in some good ...

Creative Activism: The Art of Social Change

Created: 18 Jan 2013

  For our friends in Denmark! Steve Duncombe will be speaking and participating in an event called Creative Activism: The Art of Social Change.  The event is hosted by ActionAid Denmark, and will be held on January 23rd.  If you're in the neighborhood, roll on ...

The Joker Always Wins

Created: 16 Jan 2013

One of my favorite lessons from the School for Creative Activism is this: fun can be powerful and comedy can be dead serious.  The best activism is effective because it hits people at an emotional level - at that gut-level sweet spot where decisions are made before conscious thought.  But it's ...

George Lakoff in 3 minutes

Created: 15 Jan 2013

Before anyone on the Left was talking about the importance of understanding the cognitive science of political decision making and action, and the necessity of framing, metaphor, story and association, there was George Lakoff. He's been telling his story to anyone who will listen for more than ...

Advertiser appropriates creative activism…for good, not evil

Created: 13 Jan 2013

Sometimes having your creative activist methodology appropriated by the powers-that-be has an upside. Witness the Yes Men style pro-bono campaign the Chicago-based advertising heavy, Leo Burnett, waged to save a small library in Troy, Michigan from the Tea ...

‘Be Wrong as Fast as You Can’ – NYTimes.com

Created: 11 Jan 2013

I recently saw a Charlie Rose interview with John Lasseter, a founder of Pixar, about the creative process behind his movies. Pixar’s in-house theory is: Be wrong as fast as you can. Mistakes are an inevitable part of the creative process, so get right down to it and start making them. Even ...

The Power of Failure – NYTimes.com

Created: 10 Jan 2013

“The ironic thing,” said Schmitz of Public Allies, “is that you have donors who took major risks in their own fortunes, but are very risk averse when giving to charity. People rightly want their dollars to have the maximum impact, but don’t apply the same logic model that they give to their ...

Laughing at Dictators

Created: 02 Jan 2013

From Good.is: The small former-Soviet republic Belarus is considered to be Europe's last surviving dictatorship. Protestors and the political opposition are jailed. Journalists are harassed. But that doesn't mean stories from that small, landlocked nation—or the dissidents trying to bring ...

Rethinking the Protest Sign

Created: 02 Jan 2013

Our friends at the Overpass Light Brigade use LED lights for a new take on an old tool in the activist arsenal.  The novelty of the technology involved is enough to garner attention from the media - and Fox News, no less. Our favorite part of their work?  They show you how to do it ...

“It Was a Good Day” Ice Cube and Politics

Created: 19 Dec 2012

"It Was a Good Day" is rapper Ice Cube's biggest hit -- a solid rap song with a great beat, it's easy to see why this record was so successful. What makes this song truly great, however, isn't Ice Cube's vivid description of his good day, but looming, omnipresent possibility of a much worse ...

The stories you aren’t reading…

Created: 12 Dec 2012

The CAA has been reading a lot about cognitive science lately.  Confirmation bias - the tendency of individuals to filter out those stories and facts that challenge what they already believe - has been on my mind ever since I learned of it during a School for Creative Activism this summer.  ...

An Archive of Desire

Created: 10 Dec 2012

The name sounds vaguely like a catalog of clippings from the back of the Village Voice.  Fortunately it's not: The Archive of Desire documents evidence of everyday visionary imagination. Ideas for a future thriving sustainable society, from the practical to the impossible, are collected and ...

Plastic Spoon Graphic

Created: 05 Dec 2012

I was reminded of this today (it was a viral hit a while back) and how it impacts cultural norms. I may work it into the School for Creative Activism ...

Behavioral Science in Campaigns

Created: 14 Nov 2012

This story in the New York Times talks about how behavioral science was used in the Obama campaign. Much of these ideas are echoed in the School for Creative Activism. An excerpt: Another technique some volunteers said they used was to inform supporters that others in their neighborhood ...

Show of Hands 2012 – bigger than ever

Created: 06 Nov 2012

School for Creative Activism alum, Donovan McKnight took the Show of Hands political party (literally, we mean party) he organized in 2011 in Greensboro NC and quadrupled it. Video ...

Richard Wolff on the economic crisis (2009)

Created: 04 Nov 2012

Economist, author, Professor emeritus UMass, Amherst, Richard Wolff, speaks about the current economic crises, its' roots and what we can do about it. The "what to do about it" section touches on where collectivism overlaps with Republican software developers in ...

On Evolution and Opiates

Created: 03 Nov 2012

Jerry Coyne explains why evolution is true. After all the scientific evidence it gets juicy. Coyne theorizes on why evolution gets so much cultural resistance (spoiler alert: religion) and shows some stunning data on the correlation between religion and unhealthy ...

Failure Support Group – Saturday 11/3

Created: 02 Nov 2012

Failure Support Group Creative, social and activist projects fail. Sometimes miserably. Come share your failure with us in a warm, supportive environment. Saturday, November 3rd, 6PM Boston University's 808 Gallery, 808 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA We provide: Group hugs and bad ...

L.M. Bogad

Created: 22 Oct 2012

Innovation, surprise… when you surprise someone, you’re earning a moment because you’re opening up a space. The surprise can open up a temporal, experiential space where anything can come in.  There’s opening up a political space, opening up a physical space.   Events, protest events, tend to ...

An open letter to critics writing about political art

Created: 20 Oct 2012

[thb_button size="small" color="red" url="https://c4aa.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/An-Open-Letter-to-Art-Critics.pdf" text="Download this essay as a pdf"] Last weekend Creative Time held their fourth annual summit on the current state of artistic activism. Over two days, scores of ...

John Hodgman “I LIKE WINNING”

Created: 01 Sep 2012

This morning at the Center for Artistic Activism we're reading and talking about John Hodgman's piece on 90 Days, 90 Reasons called "I LIKE ...

Behind the scenes with the Yes Labs

Created: 10 Jul 2012

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Mini-Documentary on Artist members of Iraq Veterans Against the War

Created: 10 Jul 2012

After discharge from service, integrating back into civilian society often comes with crisis. In Chicago, members of Iraq Veterans Against the War are using art to process their experiences and to educate the public about the traumas of ...

ExtraEnvironmentalist Interview with CAA’s Steve Lambert

Created: 10 Jul 2012

The ExtraEnvironmentalist podcast recently did an interview with the Center for Artistic Activism's Steve Lambert. With an educational system that trains artists to develop their talents into commercial skills, our culture is missing out on the ability for art to disrupt normalcy. Why should ...

Mr. Rogers defends public funding to the US Senate and secures $20 Million

Created: 22 Jun 2012

Sincerity and ultimately a song win over a US Senator who has no idea who Mr. Rogers is. Watch 1969 Senate Hearings on PBS. See more from Mister Rogers' ...

“Look at him; no ribbons, no lace!” Cyrano teaches us old lessons

Created: 10 Jun 2012

I don't think I understood how valuable this was in freshman year English class. What a strength to have such confidence, and be able to insult yourself better than anyone else. To know that what others perceive as our weaknesses are actually ...

Money is not Speech …

Created: 04 Jun 2012

... just one of the slogans to be used in a national campaign this summer. While stamp tactics are not new for the Occupy movement (see Occupy George) it appears that this stamp campaign will reach for a specific point on the horizon. "Ben Cohen (co-founder of Ben & Jerry's ice cream) and ...

“Living in Limbo” brings LGBT issues to the Civil Rights Institute in Birmingham, Alabama

Created: 16 May 2012

Living in Limbo: A contemporary photography exhibit that honors the complexities of lesbian family life by revealing authentic moments. Unfortunately the movement for LGBT rights doesn't shift at the same pace around the country. Certain regions make strides ...

L.M. Bogad’s Economusic Performance

Created: 12 May 2012

Here's a short excerpt of (CAA West Coast Director) Larry Bogad's new Economusic which he performed on March 30 in New York at the Austrian Cultural Forum. Contact Larry to bring it to your ...

Dread Scott

Created: 10 Apr 2012

  "They denounced my work on the floor of the Senate as they passed the legislation. And President Bush publicly said he thought the work was disgraceful. So here I am 24 years old and the President of the United States knows I exist and doesn’t like what I’m doing, and I think, I must ...

The Pigs vs. The Freaks

Created: 04 Mar 2012

Will we see a Black Bloc vs. Riot Cops soccer match in ...

Joseph DeLappe

Created: 28 Jan 2012

"It may not effect change in the kind of physical sense that maybe we’ve been talking about, but I think if you can get inside someone’s head, and make the synapses shift for a second, ...

10 New Year’s resolutions for designers

Created: 03 Jan 2012

There's some great chunks of wisdom in this .net magazine post from Mike Monteiro that we can creatively adapt to our own practices. Like this: from number one: "Choose better problems to solve" We have more processing power, affordable tools, and combined intelligence right this very ...

Sarah Silverman, Comedy, and the idea of the meta-bigot

Created: 02 Jan 2012

This piece from Slate in 2005 introduces the interesting idea of a meta-bigots: Silverman has become an important member of a guerrilla vanguard in the culture wars that we might call the "meta-bigots".... The meta-bigots work at social problems indirectly; instead of discussing race, rape, ...

Party as a Political Act

Created: 22 Dec 2011

http://vimeo.com/31114259 "We pulled off an event that invoked the shock of something completely different, but was also universally familiar, and we did it in the middle of downtown. I feel good about that at the basest level." We met Donovan McKnight last Spring when he participated in our ...

Always good stuff from ill doctrine

Created: 16 Dec 2011

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Frank Luntz on Occupy Wall Street

Created: 04 Dec 2011

"I'm so scared of this anti-Wall Street effort. I'm frightened to death," said Frank Luntz, a Republican strategist and one of the nation's foremost experts on crafting the perfect political message. "They're having an impact on what the American people think of capitalism." Luntz offered ...

Kids on Wall Street

Created: 27 Nov 2011

7 year old Interviews Occupy DC protesters   Wonder Showzen: Where will you hide when the revolution comes? This is from a couple years ago, but I have never forgotten it. [youtube ...

An Occupied Halloween

Created: 14 Nov 2011

Big thanks to CAA's friends Gan Golan and Mark Read for sending us these links to coverage of Occupied performances and protests that took place on Halloween. ...

Clowns Arrested in Near-Successful Attack on Wall Street Bull

Created: 14 Nov 2011

From the Yes Lab Earlier today, a small group of Occupy Wall Street activists engaged in a near-successful corrida against the Wall Street Bull. The incident began when two clowns, Hannah Morgan and Louis Jargow, scaled the steel barricades protecting the landmark. The clowns began ...

APEC World Leaders Dinner Gets Occupied

Created: 14 Nov 2011

From the Yes Lab Honolulu - A change in the programmed entertainment at last night's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) gala left a few world leaders slack-jawed, though most seemed not to notice that anything was amiss. During the gala dinner, renowned Hawaiian guitarist Makana, ...

12,000 Encircle White House In Protest of Keystone XL Tar Sands Pipeline

Created: 06 Nov 2011

Today, more than 12,000 people from across the United States and Canada gathered at the White House to call on President Obama to stop the TransCanada Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.  After a rally in Lafayette Square addressed by elected officials, youth climate activists,  environmental ...

Art and Subversive Humor

Created: 04 Nov 2011

The New York Times Magazine published an excellent article about artists and activists in China who evade censors by coding their critiques of the government in humor and satire.  The article is full of examples of beautiful - and effective - artistic activist gestures.   ...

Tim DeChristopher’s OWS call to action from prison

Created: 02 Nov 2011

Incarcerated climate activist Tim DeChristopher recently sent Occupy Wall Street a letter from jail, which was read by Russell and Ashley Anderson from Peaceful Uprising on October 30th. "The message should be clear," DeChristopher wrote. "We’re not giving up on our future even if it's ...

Student Activists Pressure Colleges to Participate in Bank Transfer Day

Created: 02 Nov 2011

Campus activists across the country are preparing for Bank Transfer Day, which encourages people to move their money from big banks to community-based credit unions on November 5. But student supporters aren't stopping at encouraging their peers to close their accounts at major banks. They ...

The Age of Activism (and reclaimed pizza boxes)

Created: 12 Oct 2011

Let me rashly and prematurely propose a name for our era: the Age of Activism. Here’s a preliminary sketch for a history of the age in which we are currently immersed, as well as a diagnosis of where this activism is heading. via The Age of Activism - Foreign Policy in Focus I stumbled ...

Protesters Against Wall Street – NYTimes.com

Created: 09 Oct 2011

It is not the job of the protesters to draft legislation. That’s the job of the nation’s leaders, and if they had been doing it all along there might not be a need for these marches and rallies. Because they have not, the public airing of grievances is a legitimate and important end in itself. ...

Destructables Launch Party – San Francisco Oct 15

Created: 08 Oct 2011

From CAA friend Packard Jennings: Destructables.org: A user generated, Do-It-Yourself website for projects of protest and creative dissent. Details: Saturday October 15th from 4pm-7pm (demos start about 5pm) In the Studio for Urban Projects. 3579 17th street (at Dolores) San ...

The Beats

Created: 07 Oct 2011

The catch-all nature of the Occupy Wall Street protests has been a major focus of the coverage of the events. Depending on the perspective of the commentators, the diversity of demands is alternately perceived as a detrimental lack of coherence, evidence of ...

My Political Faith

Created: 05 Oct 2011

The following is a short piece I wrote for an on-line journal called freq.uenci.es who asked me to write about spirituality. At first I said no; I don't think of myself as a spiritual person. But then I started thinking about some of the training work that Lambert and I do in the School for ...

Is This What Civil Disobedience Looks Like? — Nathan Schneider

Created: 03 Oct 2011

  Nathan Schneider, from Waging NonViolence makes an excellent point here in his coverage of the mass arrests of Occupy Wallstreet on the Brooklyn Bridge about what are we trying to "demonstrate" in our demonstrations: "One might wonder, however, whether causing such an obstruction is ...

Will Bloomberg End Protesters’ Stay on Wall Street?

Created: 02 Oct 2011

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg raised the specter of shutting down a two-week long demonstration on Wall Street, telling protesters who are speaking out against greed and corruption that the banks deserve support. Asked directly on his weekly radio show Friday whether he will allow ...

700 arrested at Occupy Wall Street

Created: 02 Oct 2011

Anjali Mullany/News A crowd of protesters and police officers swarmed the Brooklyn Bridge on Saturday. Thousands of Occupy Wall Street protesters swarmed the Brooklyn Bride Saturday, shutting down car lanes and setting up yet another tense showdown with the NYPD. Roughly 700 people were ...

Moving Planet Rallies Prompt Global Climate Action

Created: 02 Oct 2011

More than 2,000 “Moving Planet” clean-energy demonstrations took place on Saturday, September 24th – at UN Headquarters in New York, in all 50 U.S. states and in 175 countries. “The planet has been stuck for too long with governments doing nothing about the biggest problem we’ve ever ...

Embodied

Created: 30 Sep 2011

On September 16th, fifty women wearing mini skirts and tank tops stood in the middle of a major roundabout in Jakarta, the capital city of the world's most populous muslim country. The women were protesting comments by the city's mayor, who called on women to stop wearing revealing clothing ...

Hundreds gather to say no to Canada’s tar sands

Created: 27 Sep 2011

After 1,253 arrests in D.C. earlier this month against the proposed tar sands pipeline, hundreds gather in Canada to protest against the tar sands. From Greenpeace.org Hundreds of people from across North America are gathered this morning on Canada's Parliament Hill for a rally ...

Trader’s Goldman Sachs comments spark BBC hoax claims

Created: 27 Sep 2011

Alessio Rastani, who claimed on BBC News 'I dream of another recession', is not a 'Yes Man' – but he could be an honest trader. He caused outrage with his comments on the global economic meltdown claiming "governments don't rule the world, Goldman Sachs rules ...

Tim DeChristopher speaks from prison

Created: 27 Sep 2011

Letter from prison: Tim DeChristopher speaks The following text appeared in a handwritten letter from Tim DeChristopher addressed to Grist’s Jennifer Prediger. If I had ever doubted the power of words, Judge Benson made their importance all too clear at my sentencing last month. ...

#OccupyWallStreet Bleeds and Leads

Created: 27 Sep 2011

Here is an interesting article from Waging Nonviolence about Occupy Wall Street. A bit after 10 p.m. on Saturday night in occupied Liberty Plaza, there was a celebration around the media tables. Photocopied facsimiles of Sunday’s New York Daily News were being passed around and ...

The trouble with apocalypse

Created: 26 Sep 2011

The Post Carbon Institute published a thought provoking piece by Kurt Cobb on "apocalypse narratives." We hear these narratives every day in the news and popular culture. Cobb points out they've done a great job to "improve ratings and book sales" and then goes one to say "Peak oil, climate ...

Serious Fun

Created: 26 Sep 2011

Tens of thousands of Chilean students resumed marches last week in Santiago, demanding a systemic overhaul of the country's education system. President Sebation Pinera has promised limited reforms and $4 billion in extra funding, but student leaders claim that the offer does not go far enough. ...

The CAA supports Beautiful Trouble. Will you?

Created: 23 Sep 2011

Beautiful Trouble will be a book & web toolbox that puts the best ideas and tactics of creative action in the hands of the next generation of change-makers, connecting the accumulated wisdom of decades of creative protest to the popular outrage of the current political moment. From ...

People power: It’s the taking part that counts – The Independent

Created: 14 Aug 2011

The jailed Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei is part of a new cultural movement that's using people power to challenge society's vested interests If this is a new avant-garde then it's operating on a different set of aesthetic rules to previous generations of political art. Typically, ...

8 Reasons Young Americans Don’t Fight Back

Created: 09 Aug 2011

Steve sent me this article in response to a question we were batting about around why there is seemingly no public outrage surrounding the burn the public or boil the public "debate" on the debt limit, especially in comparison to what has happened or is happening in Egypt, Spain, Israel and ...

The greatest victory comes from culture, not weapons

Created: 03 Aug 2011

I've been reading Paul Provenza and Dan Dion's ¡SATIRISTAS! Comedians, Contrarians, Raconteurs & Vulgarians and it's filled with wonderful moments like the one above. The book is a series of 3-5 page interviews with comedians and satirists from Paul Krassner to Rosanne Barr. Every ...

Get Loud, Move Quickly, and Shifting Focus

Created: 30 Jul 2011

I love stuff like this because of the metaphors it supplies. I'm not a fighter. I haven't been in anything close to a fight in 15 years. I'm resistant to the idea of fighting, and fear fantasies where I would need this (knock on wood) though being prepared... ...

Pie-ing Murdoch: Activism or Egoism?

Created: 19 Jul 2011

An "activist" just tried to pie Rupert Murdoch and The New York Times Blog put it very simply: Unless the activist who charged at Mr. Murdoch wanted to help distract attention from his testimony -- and that of Rebekah Brooks, who is now giving evidence to the Commons select committee -- he ...

Laughter Against The Machine – Tour Documentary

Created: 15 Jul 2011

First, you have to know about W. Kamau Bell. W. KAMAU BELL is one of the fastest-rising socio-political comics in the United States, best known for his critically acclaimed solo show "The W. Kamau Bell Curve: Ending Racism in About an Hour.” Praised by Punchline Magazine as “one of our ...

Man explains why he loves the Orlando Police Dept

Created: 10 Jul 2011

YouTube - ‪Shocking!! Man explains to WFTV News why he loves the Orlando Police Department - ...

Michael Albert argues for utopia

Created: 06 Jul 2011

Without using the word per se. Brilliant. [youtube ...

Can Conservative Political Humor Be Funny?

Created: 16 Jun 2011

"An Examination of The 1/2 Hour News Hour and An American Carol" on Splitsider today looks at why conservative political humor has failed. The crux of the argument is here: So where Surnow was wrong was in presuming that effective comedy tilts right or left, because the tilt of truly ...

Beyond The Choir:: Climate scientists reaching beyond the choir & dropping the F-bomb VIDEO

Created: 11 Jun 2011

reposted from BeyondTheChior A while back Chris Mooney, author of The Republican War on Science, offered some sound advice to climate scientists about "good climate communication". Basically, if you're a climate scientist who wants society to take your data seriously, you have to be ...

The Importance of Stephen Colbert’s Bold and Subversive PAC

Created: 01 Jun 2011

Stephen Hoban has written a great summary and the full story is on Splitsider. Here's the beginning: On Wednesday night Stephen Colbert took on Comedy Central's parent company Viacom, calling out their lawyers for trying to block his attempts to form a political action committee for the ...

Poor Immigrant as Muse

Created: 19 May 2011

The following is an article about the artist Tania Bruguera and and her year-long project of living with and "as" an immigrant in NYC. This raises the question of: How does this art address and/or effect poor immigrants' lives? The most charitable reading is that the artist intends to use her ...

200 years ago The Luddites used humor, spectacle, narrative, and myth

Created: 06 May 2011

From The Right To Be Lazy. Ned Ludd was a fictitious leader. Costumes, jokes, and more. Here's an excerpt: “The Luddites, as they soon became known, were dead serious about their protests. ... But they were also making fun, dispatching officious-sounding letters that began, ‘Whereas by the ...

Overcoming political polarization… but not through facts

Created: 01 May 2011

Ethan Zuckerman has posted a beautiful piece that stitches together many of the ideas we deal with in How To Win and the Center for Artistic Activism. I can't recommend it enough: Overcoming political polarization… but not through facts It ties together polarization, confirmation bias, ...

Diggers: If you can act it out, it’s real.

Created: 23 Apr 2011

We thought: culture is much more important than politics. Let's just start getting people living the way they wanna live. You wanna live in a world where you don't have to work? Let's make it. You wanna live in a world where you can get food for free? Let's make it. You wanna live ...

New ‘Tactical Urbanism’ guide for aspiring guerrilla urbanists | Grist

Created: 09 Apr 2011

The Next Generation of New Urbanists yes, these are young New Urbanists, because New Urbanism has been around long enough that it's getting a little ... old and the Street Plans Collaborative want to help. They've put together a "Tactical Urbanism" guide that you can download for use when you ...

Culture Gap – New York Bike Lanes

Created: 22 Mar 2011

Duncombe and I have said more than once "you can change the laws, but it won't matter if the culture doesn't change with it." For lack of a better term, I'm going to call this – for now – a Culture Gap. A change may be "the right thing," environmentally, economically, socially, for justice, ...

Design with Intent Toolkit

Created: 27 Jan 2011

Design with Intent:101 Patterns for Influencing Behaviour Through Design All design influences our behaviour, but as designers we don't always consciously consider the power this gives us to help people, (and, sometimes, to manipulate them). There's a huge opportunity for design for ...

Creative militancy meets militant creativity

Created: 28 Dec 2010

By Sarah Amsler Lecturer in Sociology at Aston University (Birmingham, UK) via the Huffington Post Under what might now need to be termed comparatively normal ...

In Kansas, Climate Skeptics Embrace Green Energy – NYTimes.com

Created: 11 Dec 2010

Attempts by the Obama administration to regulate greenhouse gases are highly unpopular here because of opposition to large-scale government intervention. Some are skeptical that humans might fundamentally alter a world that was created by God. If the heartland is to seriously reduce its ...

Arnold Schwarzenegger knows environmental leadership

Created: 19 Nov 2010

"I think that I have the talent of speaking the language in such a way so that the world understands it rather than making it complicated," he said. But don't expect ...

Mussolini on Total Politics

Created: 21 Oct 2010

"We play the lyre on all its strings: from violence to religion, from art to politics." - Benito Mussolini, 1932, from MOMA's Chaos and Classicism ...

Art as Terrorism — Antanas Mockus

Created: 15 Oct 2010

Antanas Mockus, was a mayor of Bogota Columbia who used innovative, creative methods to build civil society. The following is from an interview between Mockus and Pedro Reyes (From Marisa' Jahn's Byproduct) PR: How do you imagine the role of the artist as social agent? AM: I think one ...

Insane Clown Posse = secret Christians

Created: 15 Oct 2010

In brief – super violent, misogynistic, homophobic, white guy hip-hop act just announced they were Christian evangelicals and this was all part of their plan. Violent J explained himself unapologetically to a New Jersey newspaper: ”You have to speak their language. You have to interest ...

UCSD arts professor cleared in at least one investigation « Last Blog On Earth

Created: 13 Aug 2010

UCSD arts professor Ricardo Dominguez did not use school funds inappropriately, according to the findings of a University of California official investigation into Dominguez’s involvement with a controversial art project. On Jan. 11, the UC system began investigating Dominguez’s use of just ...

There's always something being said

Created: 10 Jul 2010

"There's always something being said. What I used to say to comics all the time was, if you're gonna stand on stage and talk to a room full of people, you might want to figure out what you wanna say." –Dylan ...

Imagine Peace by Yoko Ono

Created: 04 Jul 2010

IMAGINE PEACE by yoko ono to the pebble people: start your own campaign! A butterfly is hopping from flower to flower. Oh, good. I think. The butterfly is busybodying as usual. We are like butterflies. We busybody ourselves every day for our survival as we think we know how. But the ...

BJ Fogg’s Behavior Model

Created: 19 May 2010

What Causes Behavior Change? My Behavior Model shows that three elements must converge at the same moment for a behavior to occur: Motivation, Ability, and Trigger. When a behavior does not occur, at least one of those three elements is missing. go to site for the ...

What is Winning? Results. – Indymedia Ireland

Created: 15 May 2010

Via Indymedia Ireland Activist Questionnaire Results This is an attempt at a summary of the results of questionnaires, interviews and a focus group at the Dublin Grassroots Gathering in June 2008 on the theme of what is winning in horizontal activism. This was done to hopefully be part of ...

Charting Creativity: Neurologically

Created: 08 May 2010

Charting Creativity: Signposts of a Hazy Territory NY Times, Patricia Cohen, May 7, 2010 Grab a timer and set it for one minute. Now list as many creative uses for a brick as you can imagine. Go. The question is part of a classic test for creativity, a quality that scientists are trying ...

Art Power

Created: 26 Apr 2010

Boris Guys, Art Power (MIT Press: 2008) "Art becomes politically effective only when it is made outside the art market -- in the context of direct political propaganda." [7] "Of course, one can easily argue that such propaganda art is simply political design- and image-making....They are ...

About Culture Push

Created: 19 Apr 2010

Culture Push is about hands-on learning, group problem solving, serious play and creating connections. The mission of Culture Push is to create a lively exchange of ideas between many different communities; artists and non-artists, professional practitioners and laypeople, across generations, ...

Rebecca Bray and Britta Riley

Created: 19 Apr 2010

"in terms of success, it really became more than just the art project that’s sitting on the wall. It became something that people wanted to engage in and talk about the wider implications." "we actually wanted to give our work to the audience and let them play with it." At the time of our ...

Carol Tavris – Mistakes Were Made

Created: 05 Apr 2010

Audio Interview at Carol Tavris - Mistakes Were Made | For Good Reason. Carol Tavris describes dissonance theory and how self-justification and self-deception often keep people from changing their minds even in the light of compelling contrary evidence, because the evidence is often ...

Hip-Hop Word Count™

Created: 17 Mar 2010

Hiop-Hop Word Count by Tahir Hemphill: We have developed a rubric that estimates the education level needed to understand each rhyme as well as, rates the artistic sophistication employed through the metaphors, similes, cultural references, consonantal/vocalic alliteration and overall ...

Why Metrics Are Killing Creativity in Advertising

Created: 08 Mar 2010

"Thing is, you cannot truly quantify creativity. And in ever-increasing fashion, our clients' (and our own) rote dependence on the dusty world of metrics is exactly why creativity is going to hell. When marketing decisions are based on numbers, we lose completely the desire to "waste" time ...

Sublime Accidents

Created: 25 Feb 2010

A public service ad for a seatbelt campaign in the UK, gone viral with lots of press too. Nice tension between beauty and horror. But if I didn't before, will I wear a seatbelt now? Or does this serve the function of reinforcement? Or merely an e-mail forward as banal statement of concern? ...

Provisions Library Blog

Created: 18 Feb 2010

Signal Fire is the blog of Provisions Library, a non-profit learning resource for arts and social change. Provisions ...

God Hates Flags

Created: 09 Feb 2010

The infamous westboro baptist church visited San Francisco. WBC’s hate-promoting signs were answered by multiple signs of randomness, nonsensical yelling, and even a unicorn. A portable stereo blared Lady GaGa, while press and people passing by ignored the WBC signs and took pictures and ...

Al Gore on Creative Activism

Created: 14 Jan 2010

Click to play or download here: Al Gore On Creative ...

A promise not satisfied

Created: 04 Jan 2010

"Aesthetic art promises a political accomplishment that it cannot satisfy, and thrives on that ambiguity. That is why those who want to isolate it from politics are somewhat beside the point. It is also why those who want to fulfill its political promise are condemned to a certain ...

badpaintingsofbarackobama.com

Created: 19 Dec 2009

just look at it: ...

Again, the truth doesn't matter

Created: 19 Dec 2009

A smart lefty is frustrated that the right is getting ahead by asserting lies and the left sticks to the truth. We know the answer here don't we? Use the truth but tap into the same outrage? Or? An excerpt from the folks at Poplicks: I know that there will always be fierce opposition to any ...

Underwear Gnomes

Created: 16 Dec 2009

Someone mentioned this to me. This still frame is from an episode of South Park where gnomes are stealing kids underwear. When asked why, they explain "stealing underwear is just phase 1." Profit is Phase 3. But apparently, none of the gnomes know what Phase 2 is and apparently they never ...

New Anti-Smoking Ads Warn Teens 'It's Gay To Smoke'

Created: 07 Dec 2009

New Anti-Smoking Ads Warn Teens 'It's Gay To ...

Excerpt from: The Culture Crash by James Panero

Created: 02 Dec 2009

While the argument Singer is making here is about philanthropy, one could extend that to any effort made at all. Why make art when you can volunteer at a soup kitchen and make a real difference? The author's rebuttal I find a little lacking and I think our artists have made a much better case. ...

Eve Mosher

Created: 11 Nov 2009

[private]Themes: Provoking intimate conversations and delivering more info. Pyramid scheme. Awakening as a political artist. Quantifiable metrics of success.[/private] In a few short years, Eve Mosher went from being an abstract sculptor who cared about the environment to an artist making ...

Bottle Bank Arcade

Created: 10 Nov 2009

OK, it's essentially an off-beat ad campaign by Volkswagon, but it does say something about modeling social behavior through fun. Bottle Bank ...

From Rob Walker's "Linkpile"

Created: 28 Oct 2009

Artists plan to encase vacant Detroit home in ice: “To draw attention to foreclosures that have battered the region.” Yeah? is there a big problem with people not knowing about foreclosures and vacant housing in Michigan? I think that info is kind of, you know, out there. Why not do this in ...

Test Marketing Michael Moore

Created: 23 Sep 2009

NY Times article (9/20/09) on Michael Moore and how he tests the effect of his movies: “Although I’m trying to say things I want to say politically, I primarily want to make an entertaining movie,” he said. “If the art of the movie doesn’t work, the politics won’t get through.” To make sure ...

Miami's Community Avengers

Created: 11 Sep 2009

Have No Fear the Community Avengers are Here! As the right wing mob mobilizes to shut down democratic debate on health care reform; as Van Jones is forced from the White House through distortions of the truth and plays on racial and political fears; as the recession deepens - the masked ...

Where's Conservative Art? Crunchy Con

Created: 02 Sep 2009

Asking our question (kind of) from the other side of the aisle. See especially the comments section. Where's Conservative ...

In Response (from naylandblake.net)

Created: 09 Aug 2009

A friend wrote me a letter and after thinking about it for a while I decided that I wanted to respond to it here. He consented graciously to me reprinting it:hi Nayland, I hope you’re enjoying your travels. Can you answer me this? How do I keep the faith when everyone tells me my work is great ...

SFMOMA | OPEN SPACE » No More Posters! Let’s See Action!

Created: 31 Jul 2009

My specific point here is that it’s time for activist design to go further than simple commentary. Not that commentary can’t provoke change or discourse, but in an age where anyone with a laptop, a wireless connection, and a Facebook account can procure the figurative equivalent of 100 people ...

Politcal Communications Strategy

Created: 30 Jul 2009

Interesting blog piece from the Huffington Post from a political communications strategist about How To Win: Ill Communication: President Obama's Misguided Health Care Strategy, by Ben ...

Politics of Surrealism

Created: 13 Jul 2009

Some interesting tidbits from The Politics of Surrealism by Helena Lewis (NY: Paragon House, 1988) "[Surrealism] tried to link together two revolutions: that of the mind, by liberating the unconscious, and the social and economic revolution of the masses. The Surrealists always maintained ...

Art and Revolution – The MIT Press

Created: 09 Jul 2009

As hopeful as it is incisive, Art and Revolution encourages a new generation of artists and thinkers to refuse to participate in the tired prescriptions of marketplace and authority and instead create radical new methods of engagement. Raunig develops an indispensable, contemporary conception ...

Anti-Smoking Ads: pain, suffering and dismemberment works.

Created: 08 Jul 2009

Anti-smoking ads historically highlight one blunt fact: smoking kills. But the World Lung Foundation has analyzed the effectiveness of ads around the world targeting various cultures and discovered it's not that simple. Sandra Mullin, senior vice president at Communications for the World Lung ...

Is "professionalization" in art equal to success?

Created: 21 Jun 2009

I caught a link on We Make Money Not Art to this Artworld Salon article that contemplated the criticism of an increasingly professionalized art world. The article questions, "What's wrong with professionalization?" after citing examples of back-handed comments towards the MFA and PhD in the ...

Power needs culture

Created: 18 May 2009

from Terry Eagleton's new book: Reason, Faith and Revolution (Yale: 2009) p. 150 "Culture is what beds power down, interweaving it with our lived experience and thus tightening its grip upon us. An authority which fails to do this will loom up as too abstract and aloof, and thus fail to ...

Tom Robbins on success

Created: 08 May 2009

"plans are one thing and fate another. when they coincide, success results. yet, success musn't be considered the absolute. it is questionable, for that matter, whether success is an adequate response to life. success can eliminate as many options as failure." -Tom Robbins, Even Cowgirls ...

James Balog, art and journalism

Created: 05 Apr 2009

Listening to James Balog I realized there is another point on our spectrum; journalism.  At another point is the "political expressionist" and then, somewhere else, is the political artist (which maybe we need a more descriptive name). Balog brings back reports, takes photos, and shows images ...

Gihan Perera: Internal Efficacy

Created: 23 Mar 2009

Gihan Perera: Grounding our Inner Leadership Spirit & Sustainability Profile "In so much of my political work, the benchmark of that was external. It was intellectual, and I mentally related it to my impact on objective conditions. However, so much of what I felt about my larger purpose was ...

From howtowin.org:

Created: 11 Mar 2009


"Entertainment- Education and Social Change"

Created: 09 Mar 2009

"Entertainment- Education and Social Change" M.J. Papa, et al, Journal of Communication, 50, 2000, pp. 31-55 This seems to be the ur article for most recent research in this field. Again, what's useful here is that these folks are taking efficacy seriously, relating it to culture, and are ...

Do It!

Created: 09 Mar 2009

[audio:http://howtowin.visitsteve.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/03/01-do-it-1.mp3] The Pink Fairies - Do It (1971) Listen to this song and you can't help but be reminded.  You can't succeed if you don't do it. Don't think about it, don't talk about it, don't write about it, you just gotta do ...

The Efficacy of Soap Operas

Created: 05 Mar 2009

"Increase in Calls to the CDC National STD and AIDS Hotline Following AIDS-Related Episodes in a Soap Opera" by May. G. Kennedy, Ann O'Leary, Vicki Beck, Katrina Pollard, and Penny Simpson An article tracking material audience response to the inclusion of AIDS related themes in a soap opera. ...

“But Does it Work?” discussion at Elizabeth Foundation

Created: 23 Feb 2009

But Does it Work? Art, Activism and the Interventionist’s Gesture Tuesday, February 24, 6:30 pm A Conversation between Joseph DeLappe, Stephen Duncombe, and Steve Lambert Artists/activists Joseph DeLappe and Steve Lambert join writer/activist/media scholar Stephen Duncombe to discuss what ...

On The Media: The Science of Media Relations

Created: 20 Feb 2009

Being a brilliant scientist doesn't always translate into being a good talking head on television or even a good source for a science reporter. So the Aldo Leopold Leadership Program at Stanford University was created to give scientists a better understanding of how to deal with the media. ...

Jonah Lehrer on Colbert

Created: 15 Feb 2009

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c Jonah Lehrer Emotions vs. Rationality in decision making. Artists need to embrace the emotional influence their work has in decision ...

Environmental Facts

Created: 03 Feb 2009

I have been working with a general assumption that most people, in 2008/9, understand that there is a climate crisis. Yet some artists and activists have been a little slow in adapting to this shift in popular knowledge; making work that tells people, again, about the horrible state of our ...

There is no "win"

Created: 23 Jan 2009

Ok, I am kinda lovin' Jay Smooth right now. Success means that we move further towards the ideals. Victories are only evidence that progress is possible, and that we are moving further towards those ideals. So measuring success is acknowledging the victories along the way, and realizing ...

The power of the symbolic win (do-over)

Created: 23 Jan 2009

apparently I added the wrong video the last time I tried to do this, so let me try again. Mainly for Jay and Duncombe. I think at the core, one of the things he's talking about, is if all that work getting Obama elected actually ...

Michael Israel inspires change!

Created: 23 Jan 2009

(check 1:30 in) See, what happens is, you see this, and then you go home and you decide you're going to do that thing that you've always wanted to. There is a direct line from him painting to you acting, he tells ...

Art Hoax Unites Europe in Displeasure

Created: 15 Jan 2009

This is a beautiful example of how activist-pranksters can exploit bureaucracy's Achilles heel. The artist commissioned for this work, David Cerny "is notorious for thumbing his nose at the establishment," says the article. I mean, just look at his website. The man once ...

"Oblique Strategies": Brian Eno and Peter Schmidt's "How to Win" card game

Created: 11 Jan 2009

  Brian Eno, the father of ambient music and Peter Schmidt, an English artist, created this deck of cards called Oblique Strategies in 1975. It is now in it's fifth edition. Via Drawn!: Oblique Strategies is a deck of cards created by Brian Eno and Peter Schmidt after thinking about ...

Jacques Ranciere on political art

Created: 10 Jan 2009

[A]n aesthetic politics always defines itself by a certain recasting of the distribution of the sensible, a reconfiguration of the given perceptual forms....The dream of a suitable political work of art is in fact the dream of disrupting the relationship between the visible, the sayable, and ...

Utah Student Wrecks Federal Land Auction

Created: 02 Jan 2009

This guy is great. He saw an opportunity and jumped on it, disrupting a corrupt auction, costing major corporations money, and drawing attention to an issue that easily could have been buried under the mountain of year-end top 10 lists and countless other examples of Bush Administration ...

George Bush discusses what's effective

Created: 19 Dec 2008

Not effective: Simply drawing attention to yourself. Yelling at him at a political rally.  Flipping him off. Effective: throwing a shoe at him and the press asking questions. Conclusions: The more unusual things one does that stray from U.S. norms and culture that cause the press to ask ...

Andy Goldsworthy

Created: 17 Dec 2008

Words do their jobs but what I'm doing here says a lot ...

Utopia

Created: 17 Dec 2008

Outopia derived from the Greek 'ou' for "no" and '-topos' for "place," a fictional, this means unrealistic or directly translated "Nothing, no matter what" This is the other half from Eutopia, and the two together combine to ...

Design and the end of the world

Created: 05 Dec 2008

Comment from Irene Maui about JooYoun Paek's conceptual design/art works: I'm tired of reading and looking to design as Art, making people to be confused about it. Some people are just looking for fame, and not really thinking on giving creative answers. The world is about to explode, and we ...

Candy Raver Russian Revolutionaries

Created: 02 Dec 2008

Not everyone has much faith in art-activism, but you can't please 'em all. Do symbolic protests accomplish anything more than raising morale for the protesters? If not is it enough to simply raise morale? Or do actions like this War prank create temporary autonomous zones and manifest, albeit ...

Bill Ayers on Fresh Air

Created: 26 Nov 2008

Bill Ayers on Fresh Air with Terry Gross This is an except from the end of the interview that I thought was relevant to the questions we're asking in How to Win. Gross: Do you think some of the tactics that you took on were in some part this youthful expression of anger, something that only ...

Marketing Lessons from Obama's Campaign – BusinessWeek

Created: 26 Nov 2008

In recent weeks, I've ended up more than once amid marketing executives discussing, with apparent seriousness, what the purveyors of ordinary products can learn from the campaign that sold America on Barack Obama. To which my response is, well, they can learn lots. As long as they, too, sell ...

Oh Yes They Did! – artnet Magazine

Created: 21 Nov 2008

My take is a little different. If anything, I think activists are already excessively focused on the media. People often judge the success of a demonstration primarily on how much media coverage it receives, rather than seeing demonstrations as a place to gain confidence, meet people and ...

A Kinder Gentler Empire

Created: 04 Nov 2008

Sinfest is both incredibly dark and refreshingly soft-hearted. The author, you can tell, is earnest. He doesn't hate the US, he loves its ideals, but he also has no illusions about its past crimes and current hypocrisies. Check out Sinfest daily. via: ...

Politics as Product

Created: 04 Nov 2008

Happy Spokesmodel Selection Day to one and all. I am certainly not the first to comment on the commodification of American politics in general and this race specifically, but a little more can be said before we're on the next distraction tomorrow. This election has been primarily a contest ...

Mark Fiore's Subversive Cartoons

Created: 28 Oct 2008

Mark Fiore is a political Flash cartoonist who cranks out a new short almost every week. He is clearly a liberal Democrat and his cartoons slant that way, but even when I find the ideas annoying or simplistic, or superficially critical, the cartoons are still funny. There are objectively funny ...

LIVERMORE / Anti-nuke activists lose out on bid to run weapons lab

Created: 26 Oct 2008

A bid by Bay Area anti-nuclear weapons activists and the New College of California to take over Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory has been rejected by the U.S. nuclear weapons agency. Tri-Valley CAREs (Communities Against a Radioactive Environment) out of Livermore, New College in San ...

Wassup 2008

Created: 25 Oct 2008

Funny, engaged in pop culture, arguably hard-hitting message... this is ...

Laugh at a Campaign Pitch? Sure. Visit the Grandparents? Not So Much. – NYTimes.com

Created: 23 Oct 2008

MIAMI — When Sarah Silverman told young Jews to get their lazy rotund rear ends to Florida to persuade their grandparents to vote for Senator Barack Obama, one question loomed: Would they go? This weekend was the first big test, a kickoff for the so-called Great Schlep, and so far, ...

Larry Flynt Producing 'Palin porno' political parody

Created: 14 Oct 2008

I think the key line here actually comes at the end. "Whatever you think of Larry Flynt, the man knows his First Amendment," Kelly concluded. Seriously, that smut monger is a true champion of the First Ammendment, and we should all remember that the freedom of speech is the freedom to be ...

Aaron Gach / The Center for Tactical Magic

Created: 26 Sep 2008

Aaron Gach is the founder of the Center for Tactical Magic and has a notable background. As part of his art training, he studied with a magician, a ninja, and a private investigator. Under the auspices of the Center for Tactical Magic he collaborates with a variety of artists, activists, and ...

Design Won't Save The World

Created: 08 Sep 2008

Yimmys ...

The Penguin "gets it"

Created: 07 Sep 2008

YouTube - ...

Seun Kuti

Created: 04 Sep 2008

Seun Kuti was interviewed on PRI's Sound of Young America a couple weeks ago. Choice excerpt typed below and you can listen to the whole program here: SK: Afrobeat is not pop. JT: Did you ever think that you would be – because afrobeat was certainly popular in Nigeria, it's not *the* pop ...

I’m Rubber, You’re Glue …

Created: 28 Aug 2008

by Jonathan Alter Published Aug 23, 2008 From Newsweek magazine issue dated Sep 1, 2008 It's hard to predict what will stick. 'It's the economy, stupid' was a hand-scrawled sign hung in Little Rock. When NEWSWEEK reported earlier this summer that the McCain family owns at least seven houses, ...

Ogilvy: "speak their language"

Created: 23 Aug 2008

"If you're trying to persuade people into do something, or buy something, it seems to me you should use their language, the language they use every day, the language in which they think." - David Ogilvy via The Hidden ...

GRL's James Powderly detained in Beijing for planning pro-Tibet

Created: 19 Aug 2008

“James is a unique voice in the world, who lives and breathes art and technology for the purpose of promoting and enabling freedom of expression for all,” said Nathan Dorjee, Director of Technology for Students for a Free Tibet. “His trip to Beijing, in support of the Tibetan ...

The State: Free Market Store

Created: 18 Aug 2008

For those not fortunate enough to remember watching The State, it was a brilliant comedy show often surreal or scatalogicaly political. This skit rolls with a black comedy to match the best Monty Python, and gets the viewer with a brujtally funny depiction of Eastern Europe after the Iron ...

Tropic Thunder – comedy is anarchy

Created: 13 Aug 2008

...in comedy, context is everything. "Tropic Thunder"... doesn't risk simply offending; at times the picture is almost appalling in its tastelessness -- I watched parts of it agape. But Stiller and his ensemble... understand that comedy is anarchy. As much as we want our lives to be stable and ...

I met the Walrus

Created: 13 Aug 2008

In 1970, a fourteen year old boy named Jerry Levitan snuck into John Lennon and Yoko Ono's Montreal room during their "peace in." The following animated short, I Met the Walrus, is based on a recording of their conversations. It was nominated for an Oscar for "best animated short" at the 2008 ...

Natalie Jeremijenko

Created: 12 Aug 2008

YouTube - Interview: Feedback Artist, Natalie Jeremijenko Also in the NYT today: “People are frustrated by their inability to cope with environmental problems in their apartments and their neighborhoods,” said George Thurston, a professor of environmental medicine at New York University ...

Get Your War On: Terrorist Watch List

Created: 03 Aug 2008

This is a new video from 23/6.com a political-ish comedy site. The video is about a serious issue, but treats it in a comical-ish way. Which is a fine strategy if done well, but I there's just not quite enough substance here. All you really get from the video is that there's a terrorist watch ...

Kurt Vonnegut Interview Mashup

Created: 01 Aug 2008

I read Timequake (one of Vonnegut's last books) recently and was surprised to see how often it related to the How to Win project. The novel isn't about any one theme, but ideas of art and affecting change are woven throughout. Vonnegut seems to be reflecting on how his literature has ...

E Waste

Created: 22 Jul 2008

The winning entry for the environment category in this year’s Media that Matters Film Festival was a short animated film about the dangers of electronic waste. And what consumers can do to help the problem. I'm not sure if I find it effective or annoying. You ...

Artists are Now Taking the Lead the Politicians Have Failed to Give (2007)

Created: 20 Jul 2008

Madeleine Bunting “Artists are Now Taking the Lead the Politicians Have Failed to Give” The Live Art Almanac Live Art UK, 2008 pp. 51-53 Originally published in the Guardian, 21 May 2007 “Artists now get lumbered with expectations that in other cultures might fall to shamans, preachers or ...

Letter from Oaxaca (2006)

Created: 20 Jul 2008

Guilermo Gómez-Peña "Letter from Oaxaca: Performing the Flames" The Live Art Almanac Live Art UK, 2008 pp. 47-50 Originally published as an e-mail, August 20, 2006 "Opening day arrived, and while we we were setting up in the Museum, 50,000 citizens had gatherd outside to support the teachers. ...

“Proximity to Politics” 3 Book Review

Created: 16 Jul 2008

via: Miscellaneous Projects Originally Written for Boot Print Volume #2 (St. Louis, USA) Proximity to Politics: A Review of Three Recent Published Dialogues on Contemporary Art and Activism By Daniel Tucker In an attempt to broadly survey the current terrain of contemporary art in ...

The Changing Face of the U.S. Consumer

Created: 13 Jul 2008

via: Ad Age NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- The marketing community, already dealing with a slumping economy and an increasingly consumer-controlled media marketplace, must confront another new reality: The face of the American consumer is changing dramatically. It's not news that the nation is ...

The first challenge of climate crisis is…

Created: 11 Jul 2008

The most fundamental reality at the present time is that the human species has over shot the capacity of the planet to sustain it. Both in terms of human numbers and in terms of the impact these human beings have on the planet. This is a very challenging situation and the first challenge is ...

"People Are Strange": a night of multimedia performance and projections

Created: 06 Jul 2008

Marisa Olsen's upcoming show is about "an active artist's earliest creative efforts and they provide evidence of an obsession with music, genre, psychology, and personal narrative that shines through in her more recent artworks." It is an exhibition to celebrate the release of her book, ...

We Ask Your Attention (1938)

Created: 02 Jul 2008

British Surrealist Group (1938) We Ask Your Attention From a pamphlet issued by the British Surrealist Group, designed by Henry Moore, London,1938 (reprinted in Art and Social Change, Will Bradley and Charles Esche, eds., London: Tate, 2007, pp. 110-114) [From a pamphlet arguing for ...

Art and Propaganda (1924)

Created: 02 Jul 2008

William Pickens (1924) Art and Propaganda Extract from The Messenger, New York, April 1924 (reprinted in Art and Social Change, Will Bradley and Charles Esche, eds., London: Tate, 2007, pp. 74-75) [A remarkably succinct and articulate explanation and defense of propaganda in art] It ...

Programme Declaration (1919)

Created: 02 Jul 2008

Komfut (1919) Programme Declaration Iskusstvo Kommuny (Art of the Commune) No. 8, Petrograd, 26 January 1919 (reprinted in Art and Social Change, Will Bradley and Charles Esche, eds., London: Tate, 2007, pp. 68) “ A communist regime demands a communist consciousness. All forms of life. ...

San Francisco to vote on naming sewer after George Bush

Created: 29 Jun 2008

Is this art? Is it activistm? Certainly, the power elite are not shaking in their boots over such stunts, but this just viscerally seems right. via: the Independet By Guy Adams in Los Angeles Friday, 27 June 2008 San Francisco Public Utilities Commission The plant that could be renamed ...

Game Culture

Created: 26 Jun 2008

Play is one of the earliest and most important activities of mammals; helping adolescents learn the skills they need to survive. Games take the free play of the animal kingdom and apply rules and constraints, which have the ability to teach and develop the values and beliefs of a culture. The ...

Quote from Georg Baselitz

Created: 26 Jun 2008

This mythology of the lone genius, isolated from society, and relieved of social responsibility, is summed up for me in these comments by the painter Georg Baselitz: "The artist is not responsible to anyone. His social role is asocial; his only responsibility consists in an attitude to the ...

Gran Fury talks to Douglas Crimp

Created: 26 Jun 2008

Gran Fury talks to Douglas Crimp - Interview ArtForum, April, 2003 DOUGLAS CRIMP: One of your members, Mark Simpson, is no longer with us. Perhaps we can officially dedicate our remarks here to his memory. When did Mark die? TOM KALIN: Mark died of AIDS on November 10, 1996. DC: Okay, ...

Home Invasion as Art

Created: 26 Jun 2008

For the past four years, Critical Art Ensemble's Steve Kurtz has been a martyr in the world of activist art, the victim of overzealous FBI investigatory impropriety. The case against him was utterly absurd, Kafka-esque even. Thankfully,though, the judge saw reason this month and his case was ...

How to Win! An Introduction…

Created: 25 Jun 2008

The Steves: As a political artist, how can you know when you’ve been successful? Hans Haacke: I’ve been asked that question many times, and that question requires one to go around it before one really avoids it. "How to Win" is a work in progress by Stephen Duncombe, an academic, and Steve ...

En Avant Dada: A History of Dadaism(1920)

Created: 25 Jun 2008

Richard Huelsenbeck (1920) En Avant Dada: A History of Dadaism From En Avant Dada: Eine Geschichte des Dadaismus, 1920 (reprinted in Art and Social Change, Will Bradley and Charles Esche, eds., London: Tate, 2007, pp. 61-68) From the First German Dadaist Manifesto, written by ...

The Socialist Ideal: Art (1891)

Created: 25 Jun 2008

William Morris (1891) “The Socialist Ideal: Art” New Review, January 1891 (reprinted in Art and Social Change, Will Bradley and Charles Esche, eds., London: Tate, 2007, pp. 47-52) “…I assert that socialism is an all-embracing theory of life, and that as it has an ethic and a religion of its ...

Architect Lebbeus Woods

Created: 23 Jun 2008

In all honesty I don't know Woods' work well. Just finished this interview and he has a reputation for making radical work that changes perceptions. Some excerpts: "It wasn't about cleaning up the mess [in the Sarajevo project] or fixing the damage; it was more about a transformation in the ...

How George Carlin Changed Comedy

Created: 23 Jun 2008

via: Time When the culture began to change in the late 1960s — when the old one-liner comics on the Ed Sullivan Show were looking pretty tired and irrelevant to a younger generation experimenting with drugs and protesting the War in Vietnam — George Carlin was the most important stand-up ...

Photographer Documents Secret Satellites — All 189 of Them

Created: 23 Jun 2008

BERKELEY, California -- For most people, photographing something that isn't there might be tough. Not so for Trevor Paglen. His shots of 189 secret spy satellites are the subject of a new exhibit -- despite the fact that, officially speaking, the satellites don't exist. The Other Night Sky, ...

John Pilger – Freedom Next Time

Created: 19 Jun 2008

This is great speech by journalist John Pilger on the powers and dangers of corporate media. I think what's most interesting about it is that he breaks from the Left/Right dialectic that plagues social change movements and takes liberalism to task for some of its crimes. The liberal Clinton ...

The New York Times: Street Maps in Political Hues

Created: 16 Jun 2008

This is an old Eyebeam R&D Project.  If you haven't used Fundrace, try it out.  There's something amazing about having access to the information.  But what is happening exactly?  Accoutability?  Transparency?  What is the result?  Maybe we should talk to ...

PRWatch: Corporate Sponsored Slacktivism

Created: 15 Jun 2008

After reading this, I wonder if artists or activists have been unwittingly influenced/inspired by some of these token, ineffective campaigns? If the culture is openly celebrating these supposed victories, one might believe they are actually effective. By Anne Landeman Recently while ...

good answer to a relevant question by some guy

Created: 30 Apr 2008

Q: Of the various projects the Anti-Advertising Agency has been involved in, which ones do you think have been most successful? A: I don’t really know for sure. To know we would have to do what is done in any marketing campaign, which is an impartial evaluation — surveys, testing, etc. And we ...

Web Analytics

Created: 29 Apr 2008

Web analytics allow you to track how many people are visiting your site, what sites they are coming from, what words they use to search when finding your site, and more. Without knowing who is looking at your site, you can know what they are looking at, for how long, in what order, they city ...

Loss Aversion, Greenpeace, and Health

Created: 29 Apr 2008

Here's a pattern of tactics I realized have something in common. They all work by presenting a threat. Loss aversion, as it can be called, can be more motivating - using the stick instead of the carrot. ## Example 1 From Greenpeace:## The ranking criteria reflect the demands of the Toxic ...

CarrotMob gives stores incentive to go green

Created: 28 Apr 2008

Blackmailing (not really) store owners by offering to bring tons of motivated customers if they will do the most to make their store energy efficient. Documented very well - including dollar amounts. Carrotmob Makes It Rain from carrotmob on ...

Hans Haacke

Created: 21 Apr 2008

Hans Haacke lecture Gallatin School, New York University, April 15, 2008 S&S: As a political artist, how can you know when you’ve been successful? Haacke: I’ve been asked that question many times, and that question requires one to go around it before one really avoids it. I believe it ...

But Is It Politics?

Created: 13 Apr 2008

But Is It Politics? These are notes that I drew upon for a talk at Dreaming the Americas: The Body Politic and Performance conference at the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center, CUNY Graduate Center, NYC, February 22, 2008. These notes are pretty cryptic and not that well thought out, but I think ...

Future Farmers: ~Human Knot~

Created: 06 Apr 2008

One month after the United States invaded Iraq, Futurefarmers put out a public call for people to come to the Marin Headlands to join in a Human Knot. A human knot starts out with a group of people holding hands in a big circle. People are then asked to get tangled and twisted up without ...

NYT – April Fool! The Purpose of Pranks

Created: 06 Apr 2008

By BENEDICT CAREY Published: April 1, 2008 Keep it above the belt, stop short of total humiliation and, if possible, mix in some irony, some drama, maybe even a bogus call from the person’s old flame or new boss. A good prank, of course, involves good stagecraft. But it also requires ...

NYT – Is the Ad a Success? The Brain Waves Tell All

Created: 06 Apr 2008

Neuroscience can provide “a more accurate way to understand what consumers really like,” Mr. Stagliano said, which helps to produce ads and programs that “break through the clutter” rather than contribute to it. “We measure attention, second by second; how ...