Artist Take Artists Space: A Juvenile Critique of Occupy Wall Street?

by Paddy Johnson on October 24, 2011 · 6 comments Newswire

Uh, what the hell happened at Artists Space? According to a notice posted on their website last night, the gallery asked a collective of ten individuals “occupying” the space to leave after staff physical threats and theft of property. The primary reason cited however was an “agenda-less” occupation. The occupation lasted roughly 28 hours, an account of which exists at Galleristny.

As reported by Animal NY, the attempted squat was led by Greek-born performance artist Georgia Sagri, who had shown at Artists Space in 2009. Occupy38 wrote on their tumblr that unlike previous exhibits, this was “not an art project.”

The exact nature of group’s general assembly process seems in question, one occupier telling AFC last night that the group was not adhering to the forum. No mic checks were used, according to Animal NY, though with a collective of only 10 people, it probably wouldn’t be necessary. Individuals on the Occupy Wall Street Arts and Culture working group listserve have denounced the occupation, though no official statement has been made. One member has described the occupation as a clear “critique of Occupy Wall Street.”

This conclusion was drawn after reading a statement published this morning on the Artist’s Take Artist’s Space tumblr, which describes the staff as “minions, apparently ignorant of their own exploitation and unwilling to join in the occupation”. They write that they are in a “battle with saboteurs, camouflaged socialists, intellectual skepticism” and promise to occupy something else.



Dave October 24, 2011 at 2:58 pm

I think you should remove the question mark from the headline, Paddy…

Steven Kaplan October 24, 2011 at 3:17 pm

#Occupy38 @Occupy38, a performance/co-optation at Artists Space

The #Occupy38 people — by which I mean Georgia Sagri — have gotten some press from this, although it seems to range from quizzical to downright condescending. But if their goal was notoriety on the 24/7 internet news cycle, they’ve achieved it. So who will be next? Drawing Center? Kitchen?

GUEST October 24, 2011 at 3:36 pm

Sagri was also joined by ICI staffer Alaina Feldman. That’s worth noting.

Guest October 28, 2011 at 10:13 am

not really–first, she’s a part-time assistant there–not really a wielder of great power within that organization. second, I’m not sure why art world people seem to be so hung up on eachother’s professional virtue?–it’s a luxury industry supported by and for the entertainment of rich people. why can’t someone in the field make a controversial statement? because you don’t agree with that statement or you think it is misguided, you are going to attack someone for professionally “not keeping it real”? is a banker or stock broker not allowed to think wall street is fucked? not sure what you do for a living, but you know, that whole glass houses, throwing stones thing? Sounds like this is probably a personal beef and has nothing to do with ICI or artists space…

let's just say. October 26, 2011 at 4:41 pm

Initially a great deal of whining takes place.  The old guard feeling threatened when some thing happens outside of the cocoon like somnambulism of a functional, institutional, or negotiable arrangement.  Eventually the elders have a moment to reflect on what startled them.  Then they change their minds.  Its almost humorous the cyclical nature of the event, except that the few who disobey are demonized by a crowd of immobiliers wielding snarky crits, bellying a sentimentality.

Paddy Johnson October 28, 2011 at 5:06 am

People: If you want your comments approved LEAVE YOUR ACTUAL NAME. The number of people who attack this blog for all kinds of poor journalism, but fail to comment under an actual name is astounding. Is there no end to cowardice and hypocrisy on the web?

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