At 10:00 pm on March 24th 2014, members of Gulf Ultra Luxury Faction (G.U.L.F.) joined by the OWS Illuminator occupied the facade of Guggenheim Museum in Uptown Manhattan for over 40 minutes. G.U.L.F. rebranded the Guggenheim’s flagship museum in protest of complicity at the ill-treatment and economic exploitation of migrant workers in Abu Dhabi who are beginning to build the new Frank Gehry-designed Guggenheim on Saadiyat (aka ‘Island of Happiness’. G.U.L.F.’s act of messaging solidarity follows recent reports from Human Rights Watch, as well as investigative findings from members of the Gulf Labor Coalition (some of whom overlap with G.U.L.F.) who have just returned from a fact-finding mission in Abu Dhabi where where they visited several worker camps and spoke with workers. They confirmed a reality that is the opposite of happy: multiple labor violations, generated by a system built on human suffering and debt bondage.
The Illuminator teamed up with Save NYPL to fight back against plans to gut the 42nd Street branch of New York Public Library. From their website: “The Committee to Save the NYPL calls for a halt to the Central Library Plan (CLP) until an independent agency can conduct a detailed cost analysis. This analysis should also evaluate the costs of an alternative proposal suggested by both Huxtable and Kimmelman that the 42nd Street building be left intact and attention directed instead to a renovation of the Mid-Manhattan building. As Kimmelman writes, “A new Mid-Manhattan branch should cost a fraction of gutting the stacks and could produce much better architecture.”
On December 17th, we traveled to Washington, DC to collaborate with the Endangered Species Coalition. The 17th marked the end of the public comment period around the proposed delisting of the Gray Wolf under the Endangered Species Act. We Projected on the Department of Interior that we all #standforwolves.
Photos from the Endangered Species Coalition
On December 3rd, we teamed up with the NYC Anarchist group In Our Hearts and went to the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn where Jeremy Hammond is currently being held. We projected messages of solidarity for Jeremy + Anonymous, sang and danced, banged on drums, blew horns and whistles, sending waves of sound and beams of light through cell windows. Faces appeared in the windows and lights flickered on and off as a sign that they were hearing and seeing our love.
Jeremy is 28 years old and was just sentenced to 10 years in federal prison for hacking under the banner of “Anonymous”. Read more about Jeremy and his hacktivism here: http://freejeremy.net/
Photos by Kyle Depew
In the dark of the night of November 18th, 2013 the historic NYC-based graffiti art mecca 5 Pointz was whitewashed by developers in an attempt to destroy the possibility of the building being legally preserved due to the cultural value of the art on it’s walls; the artists were currently in court with the developers fighting for protection on these grounds. Precious spray art from countless world-renowned artists was destroyed. A candlelight vigil was held the next evening and we came with the People’s Pad to allow the artists to legally tag the building one last time.
Photos by Lucky Tran and Kyle Depew
In late October and early November, we teamed up with Greenpeace to do some anti-coal projections around Portland and San Francisco. We even helped with a massive, LED-letter banner drop off of the Burnside Bridge in Portland. Here are some of the resulting photos as well as a short video below!
On October 15th, 2013 The Illuminator projected the world debut of Fight For The Future’s brand new short film about the NSA. Demand Progress, Restore the 4th, and Time’s Up activists helped organize. Over 100 people gathered in Washington Square Park to come see the screening. To learn more about the evils of the NSA and to see the film check out Fight For The Future’s page here:
( to see the film )
Photos by Kyle Depew
On Saturday, October 5th we projected with Breakthrough, a humanitarian and immigrant rights group. At the Bushwick Film Festival we helped spread the message to…. deport the Statue of Liberty?!