Brooklyn Museum Protest

artists of color bloc has been active in the anti-gentrification and displacement protest involving the Brooklyn Museum. We are committed to the protest organizing that was led by the Brooklyn Anti-Gentrification Network (B.A.N.), a people of color initiative to fight gentrification and the displacement of diverse communities of color. Their concerns and demands evoke similar concerns within our group—but more specifically, we seek to expand the conversation of gentrification as it relates to culture, community, and diversity in an institutional context.

We have been in contact with the Brooklyn Museum since February 17, 2016. Despite the fact that the museum director has made comments that they embrace ‘dialog’ on these issues, upper management has deferred all ‘dialog’ with us to the Public Programming Department, most of which are workers of color. It should be noted that the museum director has met several times with many non-people of color since the protest begun on November 17th, 2015. At this point, the museum’s director’s commitment to ‘dialog’ specifically with artists and communities of color is seriously lacking.

Dovetail into the Demands of 2016

Since then, our efforts have dovetailed into the work being done by Movement to Protect the People to create the first iteration of the ‘A People’s Monument to Anti-Displacement Organizing’, which focuses on the fight to stop the rezoning of Crown Heights/Flatbush. We are now working on programming an Anti-Displacement Summit to be held at The Brooklyn Museum on Sunday, July 10, 2016.

arrtists of color bloc worked with Alicia Boyd, a community activist to help create “A People’s Monument to Anti-Displacement Organizing,” photo: Caitlin Ochs for The New York Times
artists of color bloc worked with Alicia Boyd, a community activist to help create “A People’s Monument to Anti-Displacement Organizing,” photo: Caitlin Ochs for The New York Times

Groups Involved in The Brooklyn Museum Protest

November 17, 2015 Protest
Morning protest 7:30am–1:00pm
Brooklyn Anti-Gentrification Network (B.A.N.)* // bangentrification.org
UPROSE* // uprose.org
Picture the Homeless* // picturethehomeless.org
#TheBronxIsNotForSale* //  facebook.com/groups/428144307393779
Black Lives Matter* // blacklivesmatter.com
Movement to Protect the People* // mtopp.org
NYC Community Garden Coalition* // nyccgc.org
596 Acres // 596acres.org

Afternoon protest “Double Crossing Brooklyn 4:00–6:00pm
Artist Studio Affordability Project (ASAP) // artiststudioaffordabilityproject.org
Not An Alternative // notanalternative.org
Guerrilla Girls // guerrillagirls.com
Reverend Billy // revbilly.com
Dread Scott // dreadscott.net
Art F City // artfcity.com
Powhida & Dalton // williampowhida.com & jenniferdalton.com

2016 Post-Protest Demands Groups (January–June 2016)
Agitprop! wall piece working group
Ultra Red // ultrared.org
Illuminator // theilluminator.org
Not An Alternative // notanalternative.org
Movement to Protect the People* // mtopp.org
Artists of Color Bloc* // aocbloc.org

Forum on Anti-Gentrification working group
Artists of Color Bloc* // aocbloc.org
Movement to Protect the People* // mtopp.org
Brooklyn Anti-Gentrification Network (B.A.N.)* // bangentrification.org


*People of Color led-initiatives and diverse coalitions. Diverse coalitions reflect the diverse demographic make-up of New York City and the 5 boroughs.