Artists Join NYCLU to Shine a Critical Light on Policing Practices in “Museum of Broken Windows”

Photo credit: Jordan Weber

NEW YORK – The New York Civil Liberties Union today officially announced the upcoming Museum of Broken Windows, a pop-up exhibition in New York City from September 22 to 30showcasing the ineffectiveness of broken windows policing, which disproportionately impacts communities of color. The Museum, which will feature artists from across the country, was curated in partnership with the Soze Agency.
 
“Broken Windows policing, which treats minor ‘quality-of-life’ infractions like jumping a turnstile or smoking marijuana as crimes, has turned neighborhoods into occupation zones,” said NYCLU advocacy director Johanna Miller.
 
“While stop-and-frisk, a hallmark of broken windows policing, has been significantly reduced, the criminalization of communities of color for minor offenses continues.
 
The goal of the Museum is to bring the emotional, physical and societal impacts of this style of policing to life for all New Yorkers, and elevate a critical conversation about what it means to be and feel safe in this city.”
 
Using art and creativity, the Museum of Broken Windows provides a powerful and emotional experience that looks critically at the system of policing in New York. The Museum houses over 60 works from 30 artists, including many from New York and many directly impacted by broken windows policing, including some who are formerly incarcerated. Participating artists and photographers include Jesse Krimes, Dread Scott, Hank Willis Thomas, Molly Crabapple, Gabe Kirchheimer and Jordan Weber.
 
The Museum of Broken Windows grew out of the NYCLU’s decades-long advocacy and litigation  to reform police practices that harm New Yorkers, including curbing stop-and-frisk and promoting transparency and accountability. Over the last several years, the NYCLU has facilitated a traveling interactive installation called Listening NYC which asks New Yorkers all over the city to talk and listen to each other about their experiences with policing. The NYCLU conducted a first-of-its-kind survey, to be released next week, of nearly 1,500 New Yorkers, revealing huge disparities in the daily impact that police have on people’s lives depending on where they live and the color of their skin.
 
“The Museum of Broken Windows will aim to actualize the tragedy of current broken windows policing policies but will also bring light to the darkness. Through art, we will uplift the movement of people who continue to seek justice” said Daveen Trentman, Co-Founder of the Soze Agency and Executive Producer of the Museum of Broken Windows. “Artists are able to protect the dignity of the many forgotten victims who live and die as a consequence of broken windows policing tactics. Audiences will be challenged to think more compassionately about policies that harm brown and black New Yorkers that are virtually ignored in predominantly white areas.” 
 
“The police have criminalized a generation of black and Latino youth, warehousing over a million in prison/jail, killing and brutalizing thousands more on the streets,” said artist Dread Scott, whose piece A Man was Lynched by Police Yesterday, is included in the exhibit. “They have continued a legacy of violence and terror that enabled Jim Crow. For 30 years, my art has been shining a light on how the buried horrors of the past continue to stalk us in the present.”
 
The Museum will be open for 10 days in late September, and will host panel discussions, talks and other events with family members of people killed by police violence, policy experts, and police officers.
 
The Museum will be located at 9 West 8th Street in Manhattan and will be open every day between September 22-30, from 10 AM to 8 PM every day and until 9 PM on Friday and Saturday.
 
Details about the schedule of events are coming soon and will be posted at: https://www.nyclu.org/mobw
 
Full list of participating artists:
Allison Geyer
Ann Lewis
AP/ Glen Stubbe
AP/ Mike McCarn
AP/Robert Cohen
Baz Dreisinger
Brian Palmer
Cleo Wade
Devin Allen
Dread Scott
Gabe Kirchheimer
Gautam Kansara
Hank Willis Thomas
Jeff Gipe
Jesse Krimes
Jonathan Bachman/Reuters
Jordan Weber
Joseph DeLapp
Keith Haring
Mark Peterson
Michael D’Antuono
Molly Crabapple
Nafis White
Nina Berman
Ricky Flores
Russell Craig
Sam Durant
Seth Wenig/AP
Ti-Rock Moore
Tracy Hetzel

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