Friday Night Slacktivism

Posted on: September 29th, 2008 at 9:14 am by

This image has been archived or removed.

This image has been archived or removed.

Early Friday evening, the rain cleared just long enough for the Slacktivist protest to ensue at McNally’s Bowery real estate. Turnout was rather minimal, limited to the usual suspects – Bob Arihood [link], John Penley, Clayton Patterson [link] – and a few curious neighborhood onlookers. Nevertheless, the overriding message of gross discontent was effectively conveyed to sidewalk denizens.

This image has been archived or removed.

This image has been archived or removed.

The event kicked off with Penley’s genius idea of taping numerous dollar bills to the windows of the exhibit. Each note was tagged with a unique phrase like, “it’s only paper,” “scam,” and “no value.” It was passive aggressiveness at its finest. Needless to say, the gallery curators did not take too kindly to the stunt. Eventually, a young man emerged from within and engaged the activists, saying that he sympathized with their plight, but that enough was enough. Penley explained that he was merely putting up dollar bills as art, and ultimately wanted “control of the neighborhood back.”

This image has been archived or removed.

This image has been archived or removed.

This image has been archived or removed.

However, before long, local hooligans spotted the “free” money and swooped in for the steal. This happened a few times, but the Slacktivists didn’t care, as the theft championed the anarchist spirit of downtown’s notorious heyday.

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There is always hope. Later in the night, a group of high-schoolers in a band ambled past, acting all punk rock. Seeing cameras flashing away, they decided to pose and mingle with the Slacktivists. With a wide grin across his face, Penley asserted himself and handed each of the musicians one marked-up dollar to walk into the gallery. There is always hope.

See Also:
It’s Only Paper: Slacktivists Protest “Outsiders” on the Bowery [NMNL]
Previous McNally coverage [BoweryBoogie]
Stay Outside [NY Post]

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