From War in the Neighborhood, a graphic novel by Seth Tobocman
The art of squatting
The Lower East Side Squatter-Homestead Archive Project held its first event last month, Excavation Celebration: Excerpts From the Squatter Archive, at the Sixth Street Community Center. Featured were original artwork, fliers, posters and photographs from the squatters movement of the 1980s and 90s. There were also screenings of rare films and videos, including a vintage television segment, Underground in Alphabet City, in which Ed Asner visited the squats. The star of the Asner film is a very young Rosario Dawson, discovered by the filmmakers on her stoop. Currently appearing in the movie Alexander and reportedly in line for the lead in the movie version of Rent, Dawson is shown talking about the new stairs her father was making for her loft, which she planned to customize the way she wanted it. Its fun, Dawson said of squatting. We stick together like a ball. You never know whats going to happen next. John Penley, whose photographs were on view, said they eventually hope to scan as much of the material as possible into a digital archive.