Photo Essays

Signs from Day 19 of #OccupyWallStreet

We’ve been documenting the signs (1, 2) at Occupy Wall Street for the last few weeks and each time we visit there’s a new batch, few are ever the same.

It is a very physical manifestation of the protests. As people drop by, paint or leave signs and then proceed on their merry way, it is their words or images that remain and we feel like voices even if only for a moment.

Some of the signs are angry, some sad and many are funny or clever. Most are written in rather clear block letters but the ones that I like the most are the ones painted by hand and done in a folksy style that reveal little or no art training. It’s not that I prefer naive expression to more professional renderings, it’s that I love to see how people see the world and render it in art. Taking photographs gives you some insight into the viewer, but there’s a level of naked reality in folk paintings that make them appealing.

Yesterday, Zuccotti Park was packed with people. The mood was festive, police seemed friendlier than I’ve ever seen them and union folk were everywhere. The Occupy Wall Street crowd is diverse and don’t let the corporate media tell you that there’s no message here. If I had to summarize it, it is that people are sick and tired of unbridled greed and who can blame them?

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