Posters prohibited in NYC

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Date: 1994

Region: North America

Subject: Political/Economic/Social Opinion, Sexual/Gender Orientation

Medium: Public Art


Artist: Humanist Movement

Confronting Bodies: City of New York

Dates of Action: 05/09/94; 01/09/94; 10/09/94

Location: Manhattan, New York

Description of Artwork: Posters inviting neighbors to participate in community activities; two community newspapers and a poetry reading.

The Incident: Case #1: New York "sanitation" police stops person taping poster to telephone booth, issues summons for $50. Poster was invitation to write in community newspaper. Case #2: New York "sanitation" police tracks author of posters using phone number, knocks on his door, issues three summonses for $50 each. Poster was invitation to write in community newspaper. Case #3: New York "sanitation" police delivers five summonses to owner of restaurant hosting a poetry reading. Owner lent space to neighbors, who put up the posters.

Results of Incident: Case #1: Person paid $50 fine. Case #2: Eight people, publishers of eight community newspaper, went to fight the summonses in a hearing. Finding there was no other way out, and knowing a the law cannot be enforced without proof, they denied having put up the posters, and the case was dismissed. Case #3: not yet resolved, first hearing was unresolved andadjourned.

Source: Michael Howard (NY, NY)