Canter's Restaurant 11:00 p.m. Sunday evening, Los Angeles, CA March 24, 1991
Daryl Gates' Poster Run #1. Conal addressing gathered crowd.
ROBBIE. Maybe we should start, okay? Let me just tell you a few things and welcome you to this special meeting of the um, L.A. art police, the um, this is kind of our special grass-roots' accountability auxiliary. Um, special, uh, elite metro section group and um, what I'd like to do with, I'll show you what we're doing with this (shows poster) is um, we don't have many of these, these are all uh, hand-pulled three color silk-screens as opposed to our usual off-set litho's, thousands and thousands,
um, but what I'd like to do with them is go infiltrate um, City Hall and the Civic Center, Parker Center, um around uh, I have a little map for you actually. Around the Times Mirror building, City Hall, the Parker Center, um, what? M.O.C.A. (Museum of Contemporary Art), the Temporary Contemporary - that whole area is just the target. And we'll give you each team five of these and I'd like you to put them up in prominent places. I spent about all afternoon scouting out the neighborhood so, I have a few special spots that I'd like to target.
And I'd like for you say put up about 3 of your 5 and take your other 2 to your neighborhood, where ever you hang out and put them up somewhere where you can enjoy 'em and watch them get destroyed. So, but here are maps of downtown. You guys. For each of you. And a phone number on the back of a bail bondsman I know very well...
CROWD. ha ha ha, thanks Robbie
CONAL. Actually, it is the phone number of a lawyer so, uh, my lawyer, a great lawyer. Not Jim. Let's see. Anybody not get one?
And so I have a little list. This is something, that this poster is something that Pat and I put together over what? How long have we been working on this?
CROWLEY. Oh, about six months.
CONAL. About six months we've been diddling around with this poster, I'd say. And um, the quote is from September uh, when Gates was at a U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, yea um, in Washington, talking about the first year of um, Bush's drug program. And it just came out of his mouth, I think sometimes that his mouth um, is a time bomb or something or maybe he just thinks with his mouth and he doesn't do that very well, you know, but just actually did say "casual drug users ought to be taken out and shot."
So we kind of updated it, considering what's been happening while we've been working on it, to take, he must have meant "taken out and beaten," cause, you know, within and inch of their lives or something cause that's kind of what the guys did to Rodney King, so we've graffitied it and updated it a little bit. I think it's a little more relevant now. I feel a lot better about the whole thing and Pat does too, right?
So, we took an actual, um, National Rifle Association target and made a facsimile of it, and photocollaged a um, actually a publicity, a official police publicity photo of Daryl Gates that Pat got from his local police headquarters.
CROWLEY. Well, his press secretary.
CONAL. His press secretary gave it to you? Yea. So, we got it from the highest sources. We got 'em looking as good as he possibly can and um, with all his fruit salad on him and everything, so, uh, we think it's quite respectful but really this is, as far as I'm concerned, um, our little grass-roots accountability program in the sense that, um, if, no one in the civic government uh, can hold Gates and his department accountable for what they're doing, uh, at least we can try. You know. Somebody's got to, so it might as well, we might as well take a stab at it and um, we'll see how we do,
you know, I know, uh, that it's a little more dangerous than most of our things, for some reason, um, you know, when you lampoon someone like George Bush or someone uh, who is very far away and very high up, it's not as dangerous as uh, making satirical, uh, ironic comments about someone in your neighborhood who has a lot of power over your own community, you know.
So, um, I want you to be very careful and um, I want you to just go put up your posters and get out of the neighborhood, go to your neighbor hood and do the same thing in yours. Don't drive in a straight line putting them up, just kind of zig-zag to your targets. Put them up.
And the way you put them up um, is to put the glue on the surface that your going to put the poster on and then have somebody take the poster and apply it to that surface. Smooth it down and then the gluer comes back and just touches up the edges so we secure all the edges of the poster um, they're about 4 feet by 2 feet and you'll get used to you know, how big that is. It's just about life size, you know, so, just figure it's this big and you put that much of a rectangle of glue and then have your poster person come by and the third person in the car, keep the motor running and look around, and look sharp, and um.
We really want everybody to have a good empowering experience and nothing to happen out there. You know, what do they say? Be careful out there. I really mean it with this one. And um, it might spoil our whole day if something goes wrong. Um, I think it'll be okay.
I have some places that I would like to hit and I want like, there's a great uh, construction site wall that maybe Stephanie and Chuck can hit on um, Central and Los Angeles, the corner of Central and Los Angeles. It's on um, the southeast corner.
CONAL. And if you could put, if you could unload 3 right there but put them, you know, one on one side facing one, one the other and one the other or if you come up with anything else, um, we'll go down to Parker Center ourselves. Me, Pat and Patty. and uh, I got a couple of sites there.
um, let's see, Raymond, maybe you could go up on Grand, like at first, the corner of first and Grand there is a, um, there's a box there and then if you keep going, toward Temple, on Grand, there are boxes and there's a um, there's a really cool bus shelter there on your right hand side as your going toward Temple on Grand, from First. Yea, yea don't go over the ad but go, go somewhere you know, where it's nice and clean. I think there's a nice clean spot there.
There are uh, a bunch of posters that I saw that are up, that are up on the streets that say uh "Aidspobia - yourself from Hollywood" and they have a little image of Oscar with a condom on. That's just about, like if that, Oscar looks about the size of Daryl Gates' penis on this poster, you know if he were to have one."
CROWD. Ha ha ha (lots of laughs)
CONAL. I really would prefer that you don't poke tag all over their tags you know, like, let, we believe in um, Aidspobia and uh, condoms and, so we just kind of go along with them, not over them. But there are, there's plenty of space out there. The traffic light switching boxes are out there and that makes everything look really nice, but you gotta be really careful. It's not exactly cool to do that. The city doesn't like it.
If you see any construction site walls as some of you will go down Grand, the other way, towards 6th, um as you go by M.O.C.A.. M.O.C.A. as your going on Grand from First to 6th. M.O.C.A., the new building, is on your left. If you keep going, the next block, there are construction site walls that are pretty clean. There's some that have a lot of nice colors on them and they're very well maintained. If you go farther, towards 6th, they're a little funkier and you'll see some of our old PLAN AHEAD posters there, and a whole bunch of stuff. That's really good because that's right downtown, right where a lot of people work and what we're after is, white collar workers and people who come to work on Monday and get a little surprise. Yea.
Century City is good. Take a couple of posters to Century City... You can go there, you can go there. Maybe some of your cronies you know like, that'd be great, that'd be great.
The idea is to get down where people are working and people are going to see them Monday morning, so um, and of course as close to City Hall as you can get and um, you know they are doing a little construction there for Metro-Rail so you gotta be careful when your driving not to put them where there are dead-ins so there isn't much car traffic. There's some places where they won't allow cars to go through. But thousands of people walk down there every day so, I just want you to go put your posters up in a place that you think is accessible for people to see and go to your neighborhood.
MALE IN CROWD. Where is L.A.P.D. headquarters?
CONAL. L.A.P.D. headquarters is Parker Center, it's on Los Angeles, right near Temple, but we'll do that...
Um, do you have any questions?
MALE IN CROWD. You usually want to target the public more is this one like more for the guys in uniform or for the public?
CONAL. This is for the public but it's for um, the civil service, I'd say, you know, um, it's for people who work white collar and it's for the people who work at City Hall. The people who work at um, the Times Mirror building. The people who work in the courts, the Municipal court houses. The people who work at Parker Center who aren't all in uniform um, it's for the City, and it's for the City establishment uh, I mean it would be for everybody, it is for everybody, but we just don't have that many um, this is something that's a little different and a little more dangerous than what we usually do and um,
Pat's been working on this a long time. I've been working on it with him, and uh, the situation has been escalating as we've been fiddling with this poster so it's pretty hot right now and um, you know I think it's the biggest poster we've done. It's probably the toughest poster we've done and it's one of the toughest problems we've had so uh, holding these guys accountable somehow, within the system is very important to our safety uh, and also very important to the safety of democracy, so um, I think it's worth whatever, you know, we're putting out to do it.
But I don't want to jeopardize you, I want to tell you that they're are a couple of ways to put up these posters. One is, you just go out and do it. The other way, if you're feeling a little nervous, or utsy, about the particular site that you really think it's a good one, the way to go about it is, to park your car around the corner, have somebody walk out with a loaded brush, just nice and slowly and brush the surface, walk away, have the next person come up with the poster, you know this is the dum-de-dum-de-dum approach, you know. Kind of do-de-do-de-do you know, just kind of walk like this come up with the poster and just put it up, and walk away and then meet at car.
You know that is just the safest way to put up posters do not run, anytime, anywhere, you get nervous, STOP, if you are talking to somebody, people come up to you on the streets, not necessarily the police but peep, just people come up to you on the streets and they want to talk, usually we talk to people and we talk about the meaning of the poster and stuff. Not too much, just a little. If they want one tell them, "I'm sorry, we would like to give you one. We just don't have enough to spare."
you know, if the police do come up to you it's important to be polite. um, (laughs) The conversation with the police is they talk and you listen. If they say, "take it down," you take it down. If they say, "get down," you get down. If they, you know, whatever they say, the idea is to distribute these things so that people will see them on Monday, not to have a confrontation with the police. Not really to do civil disobedience, you know, that's one way to do it and I think it's a legitimate way to register protest, that's not what we're doing. We're doing something that's a little bit utsy, but we're trying to get it up and go home and um, make our statement. you know, and walk away, and be pleased that we've done something. so, that's it. Do you have any questions at all, anything you want to say?
CROWLEY. Just be careful, really.
CONAL. I think this is one to be really careful.
MALE IN CROWD. Is this good all night long? (phone number)
CONAL. This is good all night long and this is a wonderful person, so, and please when you're done with this and you're home nice and safely, throw it away.
JAN WILLIAMSON. I have a joke for everybody. How many police officers does it take to push a guy off of a building? NONE, he tripped.
(luke warm reception)
CONAL. Well, we don't want anybody tripping. Especially, or slipping in the rain, so, it's much more romantic in the rain so I know we're gonna have a wonderful time. But uh, I don't know about Paul's suit. It's probably waterproof.
PAUL HAAS (I.C.M. AGENT) It is.
CONAL. I want you all to go home and call Debbie. Tell her your okay. Call Mom and tell her your okay. She'll give you the number later. Um, I would like you to save one or two to put up in your neighborhood, you know, that does two things for me. One, it keeps you out of the really hottest neighborhood, you know, and two, it disperses the message a little bit around the city which is great so, and also you get your own kick to see your handiwork, you know, everyday, as leave the house for as long as it lasts.
So, what we're gonna do is were gonna go, we'll finish up our coffee and uh, get that Kosher coffee pumping, get out there and we'll me at your truck, Chuck's truck and we'll give you your posters and your glue and your brushes and we'll see you later. Okay. Anything? Okay. Yea, sure it's up to your discretion. I told you a couple of good places Let's see if I have any more.
If somebody would go down first um, right across the street from the Times Mirror building there are two boxes that are good. That would be really nice. You know, I mean we're friendly with the press. You know, we'd like them to get the message.
South-central? We'll talk about it later...
One thing I would like to tell you is, has everybody seen the Degenerate Art Show at L.A.C.M.A.? (Los Angeles County Museum of Art) Now that's a great thing happening in Los Angeles at a very appropriate time and uh, I think that this is definitely degenerate art, don't you? So um, we're gonna go put one up. Our contribution to the Degenerate Art Show but other than that, I think I'd better be quiet... Mom's giving me that look.
DEBBIE ROSS. I am?
CONAL. So finish up and we'll go out. We'll meet you out there in ten minutes okay, you know where the parking lot is? The Canter's parking lot...
back to menu