Tag Archives: John Penley

2013 A Record of Rebellion


In an effort to catalogue my creative output over the past year i’m posting the various projects that came to fruition in 2013. i produced, directed and edited three documentary web series. The idea for these web series came about when i wanted to create a record of a history that i felt wasn’t being recorded for future generations. i wanted to create a record of rebels and their rebellions and hear it from those who had to live through it. More of these histories in the form of web series are coming in 2014.

For the few folks out there who appreciate watching things longer than 5 minutes online i have compiled each of the web series into single videos. If you want to see the original web series as they were released you can click on the links to be connected to the complete series.

AN ONGOING COST TO BE FREE

The first one was An On Going Cost To Be Free, an 11-part series on current US held Black Unity Council & Black Liberation Army political prisoner Russell Maroon Shoatz who has been in prison for over 40 years. He’s served over 20 years of that time in isolation where the lights in his cell are never turned off and he’s allowed one hour of exercise a day in another small cage. i interviewed his son Russell Shoatz III initially to get the perspective of what it must be like to have grown up with your father as a political prisoner. The interview became larger in scope and became the detailed story of Russell Maroon Shoatz and his incredible strength through the trials and tribulations of his imprisonment.

SACRIFICE WITHOUT HESITATION

The second web series was Sacrifice Without Hesitation a five-part series on Luis Rosa a former US held Puerto Rican political prisoner of war who served 20 years in US prisons. Luis was a member of the FALN Fuerzas Armadas de Liberacion Nacional (Armed Forces of National Liberation) a clandestine armed organization that fought to free Puerto Rico from US colonialism. In 1999 Luis was pardoned by then President Clinton. In Sacrifice Without Hesitation he tells his story of how he became politicized, his arrest, his imprisonment and subsequent freedom.

JOHN PENLEY: ANARCHO-YIPPIE

The third web series was John Penley: Anarcho-Yippie a six-part series on my friend John Penley. John was a freelance photojournalist who documented NYC’s Lower East Side counter-culture movement for two decades. He donated his archive of 30,000 images to NYU’s Tamiment Library. After losing his job and his home he joined the Occupy movement and lived on the streets protesting. In the winter of 2013 he decide to protest NYU’s rampant expansion plans that are accelerating gentrification. During the day he worked on his archive at the library and at night slept outside of the library on the sidewalk by night in the cold, wet and snow while the archive he donated to their library was safe, warm and dry. i spoke to John about his life, his work, his politics, his protest with NYU and NYC’s larger gentrification issues and his unique point of view on the future.

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p1eniL-1go

John Penley Anarcho-Yippie (Pt.6)


JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©
JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©

This is the final episode of the web series of John Penley Anarcho-Yippie. In this episode John talks about the crossroads between technology and radical protest. He speaks about the roots of hacking within the Yippies and how many of the things that the Yippies did were a precursor to Anonymous and Occupy Wall Street. John also talks about some of the differences between the Yippies and Occupy Wall Street. The series ends with John talking about how he became homeless and the very real threat that he may end up dying on the street…

To see the whole web series click here…

Follow John on Twitter @jpenleypixcom

Check out John’s Archive @ Tamimnet Library here…

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p1eniL-15z

John Penley Anarcho-Yippie (Pt5)


JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©
JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO-YIPPIE by vagabond ©

In this episode of JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO-YIPPIE John talks about some of his more memorable experiences with the Yippies and how he developed a relationship with the Mohawk people. He also talks about some of his experiences as a photojournalist reveling in a one story in which he got a photo of former Mayor Ed Koch callously walking through an ACT-UP protest. John wraps up this episode with a warning to working class and poor people proposing that revolution may be the only solution left for them…

You can see the Parts 1 – 4 of John Penley Anarcho-Yippie here…

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p1eniL-150

John Penley Anarcho-Yippie (Pt4)


JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©
JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©

In this episode of JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO-YIPPIE John talks about his support of Bradley Manning and his own experience in the US military and the reason why he relates so deeply to Manning. He also speaks about his recent run in with the law and about the realization that many of his friends are in prison for trying to make the world a better place. He also talks about the Obama administrations ability to kill or imprison American citizens at will and without due process. John wraps up this episode talking some more about his experiences in Zucotti Park with Occupy Wall Street.

To check out Parts 1 –  3 click here

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p1eniL-147

John Penley Anarcho-Yippie (Pt3)


JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©
JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©

In this episode of John Penley Anarcho-Yippie, John compares and contrasts his experiences with the Yippies with his days in Zucotti Park and being involved in the Occupy Wall Street movement. John also talks a little bit about more his archive of 30,000 images in the Tamimnet Library at NYU. As he does he reminisces about his days as photojournalist documenting the Squatters movement of NYC’s Lower East Side.

To check out Part’s 1 & 2… click here

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p1eniL-139

John Penley Anarcho-Yippie (Pt2)


JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©
JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©

In this episode of John Penley Anarcho-Yippie, John talks about how he first came to New York and his experiences with the Yippies in New York. He talks about meeting Abbie Hoffman, Bob Fass, Wavy Gravy, Dhourba Bin Wahad, and Judith Molina of The Living Theater and many others. He also talks about how the Yippies taught him to manipulate the media to bring attention to the protests that he organizes. John also speaks about his recent occupations starting in Zucotti Park with Occupy Wall Street up to his present occupation in front of the NYU library that holds his archive of 30,000 photos from his days as a photojournalist in New York. John was protesting against NYU and their rapid gentrification of the Lower East Side and Greenwich Village. John also recounts his experiences with law enforcement from his day with the Yippies to his days as a photojournalist and to his recent encounters with police during his recent occupations.

By the way… Today is John’s birthday so be sure to wish him a Happy Personal New Year’s Day… HAPPY BIRTHDAY JOHN AND MANY MANY MORE!!!

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p1eniL-12X

John Penley Anarcho Yippie Pt. 1


JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©
JOHN PENLEY ANARCHO YIPPIE by vagabond ©

John Penley is an Anarcho Yippie is a new web series that i’m launching today with a new episode coming each week for the next few weeks. The story of how John became an Anarcho Yippie and what an Anarcho Yippie is, has everything to do with NYC in the 1980’s… John first moved to the Lower East Side of New York City in 1985 and became a freelance photojournalist. His photos were featured in all the daily newspapers like the The Daily News, The NY Post, The New York Times and many other publications. His archive of some 30,000 images was recently acquired by the Tamimnet Library at NYU.

At the end of the summer of 2011 John became homeless. Since then he’s been a part of various Occupy movements in New York, Washington DC, and Asheville NC. In March of 2013 John returned to New York to work on his archive in the library. In true Anarcho Yippie fashion John is also holding a protest against NYU by sleeping on the sidewalk in front of the library that houses his archive to bring attention to NYU’s contribution to the rapid gentrification to the Lower East Side and it’s planned expansion into Greenwich Village. In this episode John talks about his days as a photojournalist and how he came to NYC after serving a federal prison term for jumping bail to join the Yippies on Bleecker Street.

Tune in next week for Part 2 of John Penley Anarcho Yippie…

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p1eniL-12o