Photos: Inside a ‘Propaganda Party’

In Gowanus, Brooklyn, on a frigid Sunday morning, a line of people chattered outside a red-bricked warehouse waiting to get in. At the stroke of noon, the Interference Archive opened its doors to its fourth ‘Propaganda Party’ and, in doing so, invited members of the public to view, take home and even create their own positive propaganda for their personal, and political, use.

The Interference Archive, in Gowanus, Brooklyn, hosted its fourth ‘Propaganda Party’ last Sunday. The Archive is a space exploring the relationship between cultural production and social movements, and works in an open stacks archival collection and study center environment.

Buttons, posters, stickers and t-shirts were all available to pick up and people were invited to create their own designs to be printed there and then. The event was free admission and the Archive asked those who work on behalf of an organization to donate their own material for distribution.

The purpose of the event was to build resistance, reclaim the word ‘propaganda’ and instill in it a positivity the Archive believes has been missing. Visitors were encouraged to make new connections and talk with people who fight for a similar cause.



Charlie Morgan, 29, an archivist from the United Kingdom living in Bedford-Stuyvesant, spoke about how all encompassing the Propaganda Party was. “This relates to the current political climate,” he said. “It’s not just pictures of Trump.”The space is a volunteer-organization — much of the funding comes from donations — and the Archive’s existence is dependent on the community believing in what they do.

Elena Levi, 26, a visual arts assistant living in Gowanus, stressed the need for the material to make its way out of the archives. “I’ve seen these posters at the Women’s March in D.C. [in January],” she said. “It’s important they get out there on the streets.”

Over 1000 people attended their last party – ‘Inauguration Resistance’ — and the Archive is now working alongside the organizers of the International Women’s Strike, scheduled for March 8th.

“We want this to be about community building,” Morgan said. “Not just giving away free posters.”

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