Salam School Mural Photos

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Had the great honor of being asked to come along with Zeitouna, a program by the Karam Foundation, to mentor displaced Syrian kids. A few dozen of us came to the Salam School, a school in Southeast Turkey for refugees. Dentists from the Syrian American Medical Society fixed hundreds of kids teeth. Boxers taught little girls to kickbox, and my friend Lina Sergie introduced the kids to the fundaments of architecture. I drew these murals.

The teachers, refugees themselves, were brilliant and inspiring. I’m shy and not particularly great with kids, and my Arabic has faded to a few sentences. But the kids loved watching me draw cats and mice up to no good all over the walls.

Photos by Mohamad Ojjeh.

This is What Sculpture Looks Like

“Also notable, and on the agitprop front, is Molly Crabapple’s ‘Portraits of myself and Lola Montes with things said about us by our contemporaries.’ This outsize painted wood cutout has faces from pulp-fiction illustrations covered with enough written comments to prove that little has changed from the 19th century to the 21st in terms of the verbal abuse often heaped upon nonconforming women.”

- Roberta Smith for The New York Times

Creative Time Reports

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Imprisonment is erasure. The state locks a person in a cage—without context, without community, without love. He becomes not human but a widget passing through a system of absolute control. The CMU enacts a double erasure: it represents the ultimate scission of the prisoner from his non-prison self. You are in a box. You are no one. You belong to us.

- “The United States Wants the World to Forget These Prisoners”.  Creative Time Reports.  by Molly Crabapple

Painting the Salam School

In June, Molly Crabapple was invited by the Karam Foundation to the Salam School in Turkey, a mentorship program for children displaced by the Syrian War. While there, she covered the walls with her drawings and wheat pastes based on many Syrian fables.

Caught Between ISIS and Assad

“ISIS are good fighters, but we fucked them,” Yusuf Halap said in fluent English.

Journalist Patrick Hilsman and I were sitting with Yusuf and two other young media activists in the Bab al Salam camp for internally displaced Syrians, a hundred yards south of the Turkish border. Bab al Salam houses 20,000 refugees, mostly women and children. Under dusty tarps, these refugees live in horrid conditions. Barefoot kids play next to rivers of sewage. Preventable diseases flourish.

- VICE: Caught Between ISIS and Assad by Molly Crabapple

Postmasters Gallery: This is what a Sculpture Looks like

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“This is What a Sculpture Looks Like”
group show at Postmasters Gallery, featuring Molly Crabapple

There are too many painting shows.
There aren’t enough sculpture shows.
Postmasters is fixing that.
Featuring the work of sixteen artists.

Postmasters Gallery
54 Franklin Street
New York City, 10013

June 14th – August 2nd, 2014

Opening reception Saturday, June 14th 5:30-8pm

Read more at: www.postmastersart.com

Vanity Fair: From Pussy Riot to Snowden: the Dissident Fetish

Writer after writer took the stage. Silver with passion, they spoke of the Organization’s work in Turkey and China. They showed a film about imprisoned Uighur journalist Ilham Tohti. I cried as his teen daughter spoke.

World-renowned authors talked of freedom. So did Nadya Tolokonnikova and Maria (Masha) Alyokhina, formerly of Pussy Riot.

No one said a word about Cecily McMillan.

- Vanity Fair: From Pussy Riot to Snowden: the Dissident Fetish by Molly Crabapple

Zeitouna #Play4Syria

Zeitouna is a mentorship program for the children displaced by the Syrian war. The Summer 2014 program will be held June 15-19 at the Salam School in Reyhanli, Turkey, serving over 800 at-risk children who’ve been denied access to education for the past year.

Molly will be involved in painting art murals on the school walls.

For more information and the option to donate, click here.

Kitty’s Canteen

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In April, Molly Crabapple created a series of murals for the interior of Kitty’s Canteen, a new restaurant in the Lower East Side, NYC. The largest integrated her designs on over thirty feet of decadent gold De Gournay wallpaper.  All photos by Najva Sol

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VICE: I Confronted Donald Trump in Dubai

Donald Trump’s hair should not be.

It sits on his head like a soufflé, both airy and solid, as improbable as any building to which he’s given his name. In Dubai, I get to inspect Trump from all angles. His hair is otherworldly, but his face is more easily dissected. It’s tangerine, save two pale circles around his eyes.

Ivanka looks perfect, however. Even when her mouth is a moue of hate.

I am sitting two scant yards from Trump père et fille at a media briefing for the Trump International Golf Course, which is being built by the Emirati firm DAMAC Properties in conjunction with Donald Trump Townhouses and Villas. Trump has promised it will be the greatest golf course in the world.

Ivanka is angry because I asked a real question. In Dubai, this can land you in jail.

- VICE: I Confronted Donald Trump in Dubai by Molly Crabapple

VICE – PHOTO REAL: ON PHOTOSHOP, FEMINISM, AND TRUTH

Two weeks ago, Jezebel published un-retouched outtakes of Lady Gaga’s Versace campaign.

Without Photoshop, Gaga’s wig was more wig-like, her makeup flat beige, but she was the same skinny, strong-nosed chameleon that Stephani Germanotta has always been. The outtakes were not interesting but showing celebrities without Photoshop is Jezebel’s brand.

Jezebel exploded in popularity in 2007 by offering a $10,000 bounty for originals of Faith Hill’s Redbook cover. The raw photos proved the magazine had liquefied the star’s waist, softened her nasiolabial folds, and brutalized her elbow into a bendy tube. This January, with more controversy, Jezebel paid another $10,000 for the originals of Lena Dunham’sVogue cover shoot. Those revealed only a tidied dress.

Jezebel’s is a feminism that seeks its scapegoat in altered images. To refrain from Photoshop is girl-positive marketing gold. Dove Campaign for Real Beauty delights itself by putting out fake filters that chide retouchers. Magazines sign “No Photoshop” pledges. Clothing companies crow that they’ve never taken a clone-stamp to their models’ thighs.

To these feminists, Photoshop is to blame to unrealistic body standards, poor self-esteem, and anorexia in teenage girls. The campaign against Photoshop is the perfect cause for white, middle-class women whose primary problem is feeling their bodies do not match an increasingly surreal media ideal.

Photoshop, the belief goes, takes a true record of a moment, and turns it into an oppressive lie.

But fuck Photoshop. Photos are already lies.

-Molly Crabapple for VICE, Photo Real: On Photoshop, Feminism and Truth

Justice for Cecily

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On Monday, May 5, Occupy Wall Street activist and friend of Dissent Cecily McMillan was unjustly convicted of assaulting a police officer at a demonstration celebrating the six-month anniversary of OWS. She is being held at Rikers Island until sentencing on Monday, May 19, and faces a maximum sentence of seven years in prison.

In response to this egregious verdict, members of the Justice for Cecily team have collaborated with fellow activists, writers, and editors—including Dissent contributing editor Sarah Leonard and members of the Dissent staff—to produce the Free Cecily! gazette. Prior to next week’s sentencing, the gazette aims to highlight Cecily’s case and the wider issues it raises about police brutality and repression of civil liberties, including the right to protest.Free Cecily! features contributions from Maurice Isserman, Sarah Jaffe, Molly Knefel, Natasha Lennard, Chase Madar, and Mychal Denzel Smith; illustrations by Molly Crabapple; Cecily’s statement from Rikers; and more.

Click here to download the PDF. Please read and share widely!

To send a letter to Judge Zweibel asking for leniency in sentencing and learn about other ways you can support Cecily, visit justiceforcecily.com.

Adult Magazine

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Tucked into the chilly, silvery Financial District, Molly’s home is a whiskeyed oasis and one of the last places in Manhattan you can straight-facedly call “bohemian.” The walls are hung salon-style with her and Fred’s paintings; the bathroom, with its peacock-blue wallpaper, is a selfie havenMolly occupies the seemingly disparate roles of carnivalesque painter, politically active writer, and foreign correspondent. When we meet, she’s preparing for a story she can’t talk about.

-“Molly Crabapple’s Too Many Things” Adult Mag

PEN Ten Interview & upcoming auction

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This week, the PEN Ten, PEN America’s biweekly interview series curated by Lauren Cerand talks with Molly Crabapple:

What is the responsibility of the writer? The artist? Is it the same?

Be honest and brave and try to make the world a bit more beautiful, which is in no way the same as making it more pretty (though that is also nice). But these are really human responsibilitie

- See more at: http://www.pen.org/interview/pen-ten-molly-crabapple#sthash.sbhSIIPT.dpuf

 

Photograph © Beowulf Sheehan/PEN American Center

Additionally, the five giant paintings Molly created live at PENfest 2011 are currently at auction to benefit the PEN America residence in Thomassin, Haiti. This early series covers the themes of labor, war, truth, money and revolution. Check them out and bid to own these gorgeous, one of a kind paintings: http://paddle8.com/auctions/pen

Photograph © Beowulf Sheehan/PEN American Center

Talking Points Memo – Istanbul: Before the Tear Gas

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On April 18th, I interviewed a Syrian refugee in Istanbul. One year short of getting an advanced degree when arrest attempts forced him to flee Aleppo, the refugee spoke English with a measured intensity. Turkey had opened its borders, he said. Though he is atheist, Turks treated him like a brother, based on what they assumed was a shared Muslim identity. “We believe that if the [Turkish] opposition wins an election they’ll throw us into the sea.” the refugee told me. “The AKP is authoritarian. They should lose. But it’s in my personal interest that they win.” Understandably, the refugee asked me not to reveal his name. In February, Turkey deported an Azerbaijani journalist in revenge for his criticizing the government.

-Talking Points Memo – Istanbul: Before the Tear Gas by Molly Crabapple

Earlier this month, Molly Crabapple flew to Istanbul to interview a variety of activists, journalists, dissidents and footbal fans to report on the post-Gezi culture of street protest before today’s planned May Day protests. The article is a long form report, including several illustrations from her travels.

4/26: Theorizing the Web conference

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On Saturday, April 26th, Molly Crabapple will be speaking on “Tweeting From Amongst the Corpses”, a discussion about Jihadists in Syria and their use of social media. This is part of an hour-long panel on “Sex and the Selfie”. Her fellow panelists include Anne Burns, Ofer Nur, Apryl Williams and is presided by Rotem Rozental. The panel runs from 11:30am-12:45pm.

Theorizing the Web is an inter- and non-disciplinary annual conference that brings together scholars, journalists, artists, activists, and commentators to ask big questions about the interrelationships between the Web and society.

The conference is open to the public and attendance fees are by donation. You must register at http://theorizingtheweb.tumblr.com

April 26th, 2014
Windmill Studios
287 Kent Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11211
11:30am-12:45pm