Welcome to Plan B PREVAILS, the second iteration of the Brooklyn College MFA thesis exhibition previously called Plan B. This show has arisen from a complex set of circumstances which began to unfold on May 4, when a City Parks official judged some work to be “inappropriate,” changed the locks of the building, and without informing us, shut down our thesis show the day after its opening. Since then, the arbitrary decisions and mishandling of our work and our rights by the City and the Brooklyn College administration have embroiled us in a struggle against censorship.
We are pleased that our work can now enjoy a run comparable to what was promised. Nevertheless, the college administration instantly chose to align itself with the City that violated our First Amendment rights, and in so doing not only violated its contract with tuition-paying students, but also compromised its commitment to mentoring and growing emerging artists. The administration took possession of our work without permission or notification, denied us access to it in a timely manner, and handled our work so carelessly that much of it was damaged, destroyed, and lost. College officials’ choices have effectively made it clear that they have no regard for our work or integrity as artists, nor do they take their role as educators seriously. So let us be clear that this exhibition in no way redeems the college administration’s actions toward us.
The show you now enter is altogether changed by the events of the past three weeks. This gorgeous 6,000 square foot space was almost completely raw when we gained access little over a week ago. You will see many works reconfigured in response to irreparable damage by the college, as well as new pieces in place of those destroyed. Above all, this show is a document of our own hard work. As artists and students who have been treated punitively and denied our rights, we stand up and show our work again because art exists to be seen and shared.
Thank you for joining Plan B Prevails in solidarity.
Susan C. Dessel
Carl James Ferrero
Sarah Nicole Phillips
Special thanks to those who gave generously of their resources and talents to make this show possible:
David Walentas & Two Trees Management
Professor Michael Mallory
Professor Karen Giusti
Professor Jennifer McCoy
Professor Mona Hadler
Professor Arnold Brooks
Professor Jennifer Ball