Crowdfunding Success: “Do Not Talk About Climate Change” Posters Go Up in Ottawa

by Franke James

OTTAWA May 29, 2013: Do Not Talk about Climate Change poster by artist/author Franke James. The street poster exhibition and online media campaign was crowdfunded at Indiegogo. Project: BANNED ON THE HILL; Photo copyright Fred Chartrand

OTTAWA May 29, 2013

“Do Not Talk About Climate Change” Posters Go Up in Ottawa

DeSmogTeam_Ottawa_May29_2013The “Do Not Talk About Climate Change” posters are up in Ottawa for one month thanks to crowdfunding contributions from 135 people from Canada, the USA and Europe. Legendary CP photographer Fred Chartrand shot this photo in Ottawa today. (His CP photo from the Death of Evidence Rally is on page 330 of my book, Banned on the Hill.)

The posters are on Bank Street at Slater if you want to drop by and have your photo taken in front of one of them — like the DeSmogBlog team of Jim Hoggan, Carol Linnitt and Brendan DeMelle did! I’ll be posting the best, here and on my site if you want to show them off! Tell me why you think it’s important to talk about climate change. Spread the word — if we can raise enough funds we’ll take the campaign to another city. Which of these 4 cities should we go to next? Calgary, Vancouver, Montreal — or Washington, D.C. Let me know by leaving a comment or tweeting @frankejames

FrankeJamesDoNotTalk730The street posters are just part of the campaign to get Ottawa talking about climate change. A topic they really do not want people to talk about. They are so busy selling tarsands oil and silencing anyone who mentions the fact that bitumen is highly polluting and contributing to climate change, that it’s a challenge, a big one.

On May 20th, thanks to Indiegogo supporters, we succeeded in putting climate change at the top of a site that every Ottawa-insider knows and reads. The Hill Times is “Canada’s politics and government newsweekly” and their readers include “influential players in Parliament, Cabinet, the Prime Minister’s Office, the Privy Council,” and more.

Which makes it just the perfect place for my “Do Not Talk about Climate Change” ad campaign — because it cannot be missed. No doubt there were a few cheerios spat out when this ad played on The Hill Times
The “Do Not Talk” ad bumped off this pipeline ad which was running the previous week.


The ad also debuted on the front page of Rabble, the voice of progressive journalists, writers, artists and activists across Canada.



The Guardian UK: Artist finds inspiration in Canadian government’s attempt to silence herby Suzanne Goldenberg, US environment correspondent “Visual essays by Franke James reveal how the ‘troublesome artist’ was targeted because her views on climate change clashed with the push to develop Alberta’s tar sands.”
“Canada, under the government of Stephen Harper, has exhibited little patience for dissent. The government has muzzled government scientists, insulted Nasa climate experts, and dismissed environmental protesters as dangerous radicals.

“But there is apparently one woman whom the government can’t shut up: the Toronto environmental writer, illustrator and activist Franke James, who turned the efforts to silence her into material for a new book. Banned on the Hill: A True Story about Dirty Oil and Government Censorship, released this week, shows how Canadian bureaucrats tried to silence James because her views on climate change clashed with the Harper government’s push to develop Alberta’s tar sands. The story is told through visual essays as well as official emails obtained by James, in which government bureaucrats discuss the troublesome artist and her work.” Link

Dogwood Initiative Blacklisted Activist Fights Back With Chilling Censorship Story Canadian author and artist Franke James’s first-hand account of the federal government’s successful attempt to block her international art show …

DeSmog Canada Artist Franke James Live and (Actually) Uncensored (Since, Apparently, She Refuses to Be)

CTV POWER PLAY: Don Martin interviews Franke James, Author of “Banned on the Hill’ & Climate Activist

TORONTO STAR: Climate activist gets even with new book
Print headline, A6, May 27, 2013; By Raveena Aulakh

“Franke James, the artist in question, first got mad — now she is getting even. James, a Toronto-based activist with no shortage of gumption and political acumen, has turned the federal government’s efforts to silence her into a new book.
Banned on the Hill: A True Story about Dirty Oil and Government Censorship was released last week and tells the story of how Canadian bureaucrats withdrew support for James because her views on climate change didn’t match those held by the Harper government. She has used access to information requests and visual essays to highlight how the Conservatives withdrew funding for the European art tour because, she writes, they didn’t like that she believes Canada is failing to act on climate change. “As a Canadian citizen, to know that the government is interfering in private business is really shocking. It’s undemocratic,” said James. “If art has to agree with government policy, then art is government propaganda.”

GRIST MAGAZINE: Artful Dodger: How one anti-Keystone activist fought the blacklist – A Franke discussion: How one artist fought back when the feds tried to shut her up

RED EYE RADIO: Artist Franke James on how her work came to clash with the Harper government’s message of Tar Sands development.

VANCOUVER OBSERVER: Deep pocket PR vs. artist Franke James: the fight’s on
By Andrea Bennett “If James’ recent interview with the Guardian is any indication, it seems Harper’s communication strategy has achieved the level of international notoriety, the apparent ‘the stuff of legend’… The attempt to silence Franke James has, instead, ensured that both her work and her message are recognized around the world.”

OTTAWA CITIZEN: Toronto artist Franke James says Harper government monitored her climate change artwork By Mike de Souza

“More than two dozen senior officials and diplomats in Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservative government monitored information about a Toronto artist over her criticism of the oil and gas industry’s environmental performance. This behind the scenes reaction was described in passages from more than 2,000 internal federal emails and other records, featured in a new book – Banned on the Hill – released this month by the artist and environmental activist, Franke James.

“This is a small fraction of all the people who’ve been monitoring my file and this is ridiculous,” said James in an interview. “It’s simply by disagreeing with them that I made it on to their list.”

GLOBE AND MAIL: Conservative attacks are nothing but bullying
By Gerald Caplan

“Ms. Casault could have a great class on government bullying by introducing her kids to the shocking saga of Franke James. Ms. James is an artist/author/environmental activist. Her work is great fun for kids of all ages and they can Google her easily. Two years ago, she was supposed to have her work exhibited in 20 European cities. But the local NGO that was sponsoring her was bullied and intimidated so badly by Canadian officials that it pulled out and the entire show was canceled. Her terrible crime? As a spokesperson for our government candidly explained, Ms. James’ show was about climate change and her opinions were contrary to those of the government. That was it. Here’s the big message that all kids better learn if they’re to survive in a bullying culture. With the rarest exception, Stephen Harper and his minions never ever admit they’re wrong. Whatever they do is always honorable, whatever opponents do is always dishonorable. Even, repeatedly, smack in the middle of the entire Wright-DuffyGate scandal, led by the Prime Minister himself boasting to his caucus that no government has ever been more accountable than his.”

HUFFINGTON POST CANADA The story of Franke James and the art of activism
By Kevin Grandia

“Franke James is doing what every Canadian is taught from an early age: to stand up and fight for what you believe is right. Franke has turned her art, her story and her activism into a visually stunning book, Banned on the Hill: a True Story about Dirty Oil and Government Censorship, and on Monday her book got international attention with a feature in UK’s Guardian media outlet. The attention is well deserved. Her art is very cool, and no doubt the success of her new book will rekindle the emotions that her state-censored European exhibit elicited from the ruling Conservative Party.”


Hey, do you think this is fun and worthwhile? Great…

Then please join my campaign! For the price of an ebook or a small perk you can be part of my activist campaign and help make a difference. Visit Indiegogo and support Banned on the Hill so we can get the climate change message out in creative and fun ways across Canada — and around the world. These banner ads are just a taste of what’s in store!

Click on this Link

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