How the NYC Squatting Movement Shaped Art in the 1980s and ’90s

A work by the artist known as Fly (courtesy the artist)

Squatting, the practice of inhabiting abandoned or in-between-use buildings, is a dying phenomenon in today’s New York City. But in the 1980s and ’90s, the city’s Lower East Side was home to a vibrant, radical squatting movement that left its mark on the city. In a panel talk titled “We the People Won’t Go: LES Artists on the Squatting movement” at the Interference Archive in Brooklyn, artists Seth Tobocman, Fly, Mac McGill, and Maggie Wrigley will share artworks and stories that shed light on the legacy of their historic movement.

“The squatting movement was about housing but it also incorporated broader political goals and promoted different kinds of communities and living arrangements,” a representative of the Interference Archive wrote in an email to Hyperallergic. “Many squats were also artist communities that hosted shows and incorporated sign-making and street art into their activism.”

The artists will present their work and discuss how their personal involvement in the squatting movement has informed their art. The talk will be moderated by cultural anthropologist and oral historian Amy Starecheski.

When: December 15, 2019, 6-8pm
Where: Interference Archive (314 7th Street, Brooklyn, NY)

More info at Interference Archive

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