Episode 39: Ben Morea and Black Mask
This week’s edition of the Horizontal Power Hour features an interview with Ben Morea, an artist and anarchist agitator who emerged after over 35 years of anonymity to discuss his participation in the late 1960s with the Lower East Side-based collectives Black Mask and Up Against the Wall Motherfuckers. Of humble origins, Morea gained notoriety as an associate of Abbie Hoffman, a defendant in an attempted murder trial, a vocal supporter of feminist (and Andy Warhol assailant) Valerie Solanas and as the only person to be expelled from the Situationist International who was never a member in the first place. As part of their assault on bourgeois art and respectable society in general, Black Mask/UAW-MF shut down the Museum of Modern Art, cut the fences at Woodstock and developed radical affinities across racial, ethnic and class constituencies then present on the Lower East Side. In the interview, Morea reflects on his participation in this crucial and under-appreciated component of the counterculture, ultimately explaining the reasons for his long absence. Global action news updates and exciting music will complement the conversation. Original air-date: 4-10-12.