Artist's Appeal for Labor Party

Jon Flanders 72763.2240 at
Thu Feb 29 19:32:47 MST 1996

Here is a straw in the wind. I tend to take celebrity endorsements with a
grain of salt, but they can be an indication of the current political mood.
Jon Flanders

 Posted JCOrozco at  Tue Feb 27 18:27:05 1996
 Subject: Artist's Appeal for a Labor Party

 Cultural Action Committee
 New Jersey Industrial Union Council, AFL-CIO

 Please post and publicize

 Artist's Appeal for a Labor Party

 Dear Sisters and Brothers,

 A historic opportunity is opening for artists concerned with the future of
art and labor.

 On June 6-9, over a thousand working-class leaders and activists will
 converge on Cleveland, Ohio, for the founding convention of a labor party in
the United States.  The convention is called by Labor Party Advocates (LPA.)
  LPA is firmly rooted in the trade-union movement.  It has the endorsement
and active support of several important international unions and numerous
district, state and local labor organizations, representing hundreds of
thousands of workers.

 Our goal is a party which will challenge the employer's two parties in the
streets, in the workplace and at the ballot box.

 The formation of a labor party would mark a watershed for the progressive
 forces of this country.   It would provide a vehicle to address the struggles
for international solidarity, for women's rights, for the rights of oppressed
peoples, immigrant workers and others marginalized or demonized by the
capitalist class.  It would mark the rebirth of class-consciousness and a
rekindling of the the vision of a world of peace and justice.

 As artists and cultural workers, we have a special responsibility to help
 illuminate that future.  The formation of a labor party would provide an
 opportunity for the organic linking of the struggles of workers and artists
in a way not seen in decades.  It would mark an impetus for lively and
critical art-making.

 We issue this appeal to all painters, writers, poets, designers, architects,
musicians,  sculptors, film  and video makers, actors, all
artists and cultural activists without exception.  Join us for a special
convening of artists in Cleveland, to help shape a cultural agenda,  along
with the convention itself.  Perhaps we can initiate actions which will
inspire new generations of artists to use their art as a weapon for the
transformation of society.

 In Solidarity,

 Mike Alewitz, Labor Art & Mural Project; CAC, IUC,  NJ
 Rudolf Baranik, Artist, NY, NY
 Elise Bryant, Artistic Director, Labor Theatre Project, Ann Arbor, MI
 Brett Butler, 'Grace Under Fire,' Studio City, CA
 David Craven, Art History Dept, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM
 Thiago DeMello, Composer, Musician, NY, NY
 Dagoberto Gilb, Writer, Carpenter, El Paso, TX
 J. R. Horne, Actor, President, NY AFTRA, NY, NY
 Gary Huck, Cartoonist, UE; Huck-Konopacki Cartoons, Pittsburgh, PA
 Tom Juravich, Labor Center, University of  MA, Amherst, MA
 Charley King, Musician, AFM, CT
 Mike Konopacki, Cartoonist, Huck-Konopacki Cartoons, Madison, WI
 Lucy Lippard, Author and Critic, Albuquerque, NM
 John McCutcheon, Musician, AFM, VA
 Betsy Salkind, Nat'l Chair, AFTRA/SAG Comedians Caucus, CA
 Pete Seeger, Beacon, NY
 May Stevens, Artist, NY, NY
 Rachel Weiss, Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Ill

 For More Information:
 Phone: (908) 220-1472/ Fax: (908) 296-1325

  E-mail from: Jonathan E. Flanders, 29-Feb-1996

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