Art builds, art builds, and art builds. 2018 was all about large-scale art builds. Thanks to the NEA (National Education Association) a crew of us from Milwaukee have been able to team up with artists and art organizers across the country to organize art builds for teachers unions in Los Angeles, Oakland, Minneapolis, and beyond. Other work in 2018 included a street sign project via Chip Thomas and Painted Desert Project on the Navajo Nation and putting together a box set in collaboration with Booklyn that documents two years of Voces de la Frontera art activism via the affinity group Voces de los Artistas. Booklyn also co-produced a box set of a decade of my prints and activist art ephemera. Major props to Booklyn who also co-produced in 2018 the Justseeds Poor People's Campaign portfolio and the 2019 portfolio Territorio y Libertad.
I just updated the site and all the updates went to the "Art Activism" page and the "Movement Graphics" page if that gives any indication of what I have been up to. I am very proud of the Voces de los Artistas group that formed in late 2016, the structure of art affinity groups in movements, and the many art builds that we have organized on a near-monthly basis. Also proud and humbled by my community in Milwaukee and beyond - but especially in Milwaukee where we have collectively build up one incredible art activism community. Resist Trump 24/7.
This past Winter and Spring has been busy with a lot of attention going to climate justice art and to community art in Milwaukee via ReciproCity. Arts organizing through Climate Prints took me to Paris for the D12 demos and creating art with hundreds of people from around the world at the Jardin d' Alice space. I have a number of recaps about that experience on this site, the Justseeds blog, and a WUWM Lake Effect radio interview. Other projects have been rooted in Milwaukee, specifically the work with ReciproCity and Peace Place (transforming vacant lots into a community park). Whereas other work has been a combination of many influences - learning from David Solnit and the D12 experience and launching an art build in Milwaukee for May Day in collaboration with Voces de la Frontera. This summer I am looking forward to working on phase 2 of Peace Place in Milwaukee and taking part in artist residency on climate justice art at the Vermont College of Fine Arts. In my spare time I have been reading books and essays by the late, great Octavia Butler.
New news! The paperback version of A People's Art History of the United States is now out. The New Press has copies for sale here. I will be speaking about the PAH book at Seminary Book Co-op in Chicago on Monday, October 19th from 6:00-8:00 and recently was a guest on the Madison community radio station W.O.R.T. Link to the interview is here.
In other news,myself and four co-collaborators - Paul Kjelland, Rachel Schragis, Devon Cupery, and Josiah Werning - recently launched Climate Prints - a website of climate justice graphics that provides creative commons / free-to- use graphics for the climate justice movement. In short, it is a movement infrastructure tool and one of many ways for artists and designers to participate in this global movement. We started the site with 70-plus graphics and launched our first campaign - graphics in support of the People's Climate Movement October 14th Day of Action. Be on the look out for our second campaign - graphics in support of the D12 (December 12th) action in Paris - mass civil disobedience to the inevitable shortcomings of the Paris climate talks as global (corporate) leaders come up with agreements palatable to the 1%, not the planet. As history has taught us, real change will come from the bottom up.
Lastly, be on the look out for a new-and-improved website from Justseeds. We are in the final stages of developing a new site that will truly showcase the wide range of work by 30 members in a decentralized co-op so expect this new site to be up soon. It should launch a new chapter in the Justseeds story that is now verging on a decade old.
Welcome to my new website - one that finally showcases the range of projects that I do and one that I can update by myself. Thank you to Josiah Werning for suggesting that I check out dunked.com.
Some news to share: The paperback version of my first book A People's Art History of the United States will be released in the Fall (October 2015) by The New Press with a list price of $21.95.
I also have a new collaborative project rolling called Climate Prints. I will share the url/link once it launches this summer.