Friday, September 14, 2007

More on Jena 6 + Conflux: Psychogeographers Hit NYC

Jena SixBack in late July I posted about the Jena 6. (There's more here.) Prosecutors have reduced charges on several of these young people, but next week, September 20, 2007, is the scheduled sentencing date for Mychal Bell, the only one of the defendants to be convicted in this grotesque, racist miscarriage of justice.

Color of Change has created a page for the Jena 6. You can sign a petition and donate money to their defense fund.

They've designated next Thursday, September 20, as a National Jena Day of Action, and if you'd like to volunteer to hand out flyers or call Louisiana officials to challenge the legal proceeding and haven't already signed the petition, you can get involved here.

Here's a YouTube video of Jack & Jill Politics' Baratunde Thurston interviewing Color of Change's James Rucker at Yearly Kos.

Update: A Louisiana appeals court has thrown out the conviction against Mychal Bell, ruling that he should not have been tried as an adult in the earlier proceedings. At the time of he was found guilty of attacking a white classmate after a racial incident, he was 16 years old. He had been jailed since December and was awaiting sentencing on September 20. Prosecutors still have the option of trying him on other counts, and some of the other defendants may still be put on trial, so please do not relent in pressing for all charges to be dropped against these young people.


Naked City
Fellow psychogeographers and dérivistes, the place is NYC and the time is now:

Conflux Festival 2007

Conflux is the annual New York festival for contemporary psychogeography, the investigation of everyday urban life through emerging artistic, technological and social practice. At Conflux, visual and sound artists, writers, urban adventurers and the public gather for four days to explore their urban environment.

People from a wide variety of backgrounds and cultures come together at the festival to re-imagine the city as a playground, a space for positive change and an opportunity for civic engagement. The Village Voice describes Conflux as a “network of maverick artists and unorthodox urban investigators…making fresh, if underground, contributions to pedestrian life in New York City, and upping the ante on today’s fight for the soul of high-density metropolises.”

From architects to skateboarders, Conflux participants have an enthusiasm for the city that’s contagious. Over the course of the long weekend the sidewalks are literally transformed into a mobile laboratory for creative action. With tools ranging from traditional paper maps to high-tech mobile devices, artists present walking tours, public installations and interactive performance, as well as bike and subway expeditions, workshops, a lecture series, a film program and live music performances at night.

But you probably already knew about it.

As you probably also already knew about Steve Lambert's Top Secret Project, which is taking place tomorrow, and which you still have time to sign up for and participate in.

Maybe I'll see you. Or I won't.

It ought to be fun in any case.

Remember, you can map your coördinates anywhere your mind happens to be....



*Anyone who draws portraits of Maxwell is going to catch my eye. (Click image for more.)

Image © 2007, Bobby Jones.

Check his work out.

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