Who Do You Trust?
Ask a group of teachers to write a mission statement
for their work in education and almost every person will write that
they want to be trusted by their students. As teachers we can turn
this around and ask, Are we trustworthy? Do we share the same
concerns as the students? Are we willing to stand up for (or simply
with) the students and their communities when things get tough?
Posters in your classroom can send a powerful message to students
that this is a place in which their concerns will be understood and
respected. A political poster can send the message that this classroom
is a safe place where racist or homophobic language is not acceptable.
As visual art teachers we know that visual stimulation is an important
component of education. By displaying a changing array of posters
in your classroom, you create non-curricular opportunities for contemplation
do you believe? Put it up on the wall.
The following sites are good sources of aesthetically and politically
NORTHLAND POSTER COLLECTIVE
Northland Poster Collective is dedicated to promoting a socially just
world through the use of art. We create, find, distribute and encourage
art that will make a positive contribution. There are many ways to
make a difference. Our art ranges from fine art prints on themes of
equality and dignity to educational posters that tell an important
story to T-shirts, buttons, and bumper stickers that express the vital
issues of the day with humor and pizzaz. Our posters grace walls in
many parts of our continent and planet and our organizing products
are used in workplaces and communities wherever people organize to
improve their conditions. Northland has grown from a small group of
artists working in a makeshift basement studio to the headquarters
for labor art that it is today.
For more information on the history of the Northland Poster Collective
and how a group of artists decided to organize themselves and distribute
their work so that their art would have an impact on the world:
To order posters from Northland Poster Collective:
Child Labor U.S.A.
by Ricardo Levins Morales
Children in nineteenth century USA working in mines. Today more child
laborers are at work then at any previous time. Based on historic
Text on this poster:
Young boys sitting bent over for 10-hour shifts picking up pieces
of coal; children sewing for hours in crowded, stuffy sweatshops;
orphan boys injured through "personal carelessness" in hot
glass factories. Laws designed to prevent such terrible exploitation
of children in the U.S. were passed during the first third of this
century following years of campaigning by the labor movement. Today
we are still finding children exploited for their labor. Some are
middle class, looking to supplement their allowances. Others are low-income
children helping to support their families or undocumented immigrants
trying to make a living. In any case, the practice of child labor
deprives youth of their childhood--of their education to prepare for
more than a life of drudgery. It robs young people of their future.
History is Too Straight
by Laurie Casagrande
Black and white photo portraits of famous Gay and Lesbian people:
Cole Porter, Eleanor Roosevelt, James Baldwin, and seven others. What
isnt taught in U.S. History or Literature classes?
To order these and other posters from NPC:
OFFICIAL GUERRILLA GIRLS SITE
The Guerrilla Girls are a group of women artists, writers, performers
and filmmakers who fight discrimination. Dubbing themselves the
conscience of culture, they declare themselves as feminist
counterparts to the mostly male tradition of anonymous do-gooders
like Robin Hood, Batman, and the Lone Ranger. They wear gorilla
masks to focus on the issues rather than their personalities. They
use humor to convey information, provoke discussion, and show that
feminists can be funny. In 16 years they have produced over 70 posters,
print projects, and actions that expose sexism and racism in the
art world and the culture at large. Kindred spirits who consider
themselves Guerrilla Girls too have passed their work around the
world. The mystery surrounding their identities has attracted attention
and support. They could be anyone; they are everywhere.
The site includes a great picture inventory of some of the best
Guerrilla Girl posters. Most posters are available for purchase.
Also, great for teachers! Now available: a
10-slide set of Guerilla Girls greatest hit posters.
Contact the Guerilla Girls at:
SYRACUSE CULTURAL WORKERS
Syracuse Cultural Workers (SCW) is an educational and cultural organization
founded in 1982. Our mission is to help sustain a culture that honors
diversity and celebrates community; that inspires and nurtures justice,
equality and freedom; that respects our fragile Earth and all its
beings; that encourages and supports all forms of creative expression.
We see cultural work as an essential part of and support for political
and economic change. Many of our materials celebrate movements for
social change and their leaders, thus helping to legitimize history
that is largely ignored or trivialized by commercial media and school
textbooks. SCW also helps to unite socially concerned artists with
a growing audience hungry for meaningful artwork.
Contact the Syracuse Cultural Workers website for a catalog: