To print the masks we were helped by local printing students but first we had to build two tables and many drying lines. We bought masses of cloth and spent the next four days cutting, printing, drying and folding.

The front of the mask had the image of a smiling face with texts in French and English talking about anonymity and the spectacle of celebrity. The reverse had a gagged face behind fencing, ready for the following days of repression that accompany any show of dissent these days...

The gift of masks

Inevitably as the global movements against neoliberalism and for life have grown and become more vocal, so has the repression. But with each act of repression, the men of money reveal themselves further. No longer can they meet in relative anonymity. Their unmasking has become a carnivalesque ritual, repeated in Seattle, Prague, Seoul, and Buenos Aires... Now, the fences grow ever higher and the meeting locations ever more remote as the mask of "tolerance" continues to slip further, revealing an animal that is cornered, knows its time is up, and is fighting for its survival. Besieged by those who desire justice, the men of money are getting scared. They want to name the faces of resistance Ð name them thugs, terrorists, flat-earthers, delinquents, dreamers. They want to capture, catalogue and criminalise the faces of those who are saying "enough is enough.Ó They want to wipe the smile of resistance off these faces forever.

Le don des masques

Alors meme que les mouvements contre le neoliberalisme et pour la vie font entendre leurs messages a travers le monde, la repression s'accro”t. Mais avec chaque acte repressif, les hommes d'argent devoilent leur jeu. Ils ne peuvent plus se rencontrer a l'abri des regards ; les demasquer est devenu un rite carnavalesque, accompli a Seattle, a Prague, a SeoulÉ Actuellement les murs s'elevent et les lieux des rencontres futures s'eloignent, pendant que les masques de "tolerance" tombent, laissant para”tre la bete effaree qui ne sait plus ou fuir. Traques par ceux qui cherchent la justice, les hommes d'argent ont peur. Ils veulent donner des noms precis aux visages de la resistance : ils les appellent delinquants, obscurantistes, casseurs, terroristes, utopistes. Ils veulent enregistrer, cataloguer, numeroter les visages de ceux qui disent "ca suffit". Ils veulent chasser le sourire de la resistance.

Carnival and rebellion have identical goals: to invert the social order with joyous abandon and to celebrate our indestructible lust for life. Carnival breaks down the barriers of capital, and releases the creativity of each individual. It throws beauty back into the streets, streets in which people begin to really live again. During Carnival, as in rebellion, we wear masks to free our inhibitions, we wear masks to transform ourselves, we wear masks to show that we are your daughter, your teacher, your bus driver, your boss.

Being faceless protects and unites us while they try to divide and persecute. By being faceless we show that who we are is not as important as what we want, and we want everything for everyone. So we will remain faceless because we refuse the spectacle of celebrity, we will remain faceless because we are everyone, we will remain faceless because the carnival beckons, we will remain faceless because the world is upside down, we will remain faceless because we are everywhere. By covering our faces we show that our words, dreams, and imaginations are more important than our biographies. By covering our faces we recover the power of our voices and our deeds. By wearing masks we become visible once again.

Carnival Against Capital
20-22 April 2001 Quebec

Le carnaval et la rebellion ont le meme sens : inverser l'ordre social avec un abandon joyeux, afin de celebrer notre irrepressible desir de vivre. Le carnaval brise les barrieres du capital et libere la creativite de chaque individu. Il remet la beaute dans la rue, ou les gens se remettent a vivre. Pendant le carnaval, comme pendant la rebellion, nous mettons des masques afin de nous laisser aller, afin de nous transformer, afin de montrer que nous sommes ta fille, ton professeur, ton chauffeur de bus, ton patron. Etre sans visage nous protege et nous unit, alors qu'ils cherchent a nous diviser, a nous persecuter.

Etre sans visage, c'est montrer que qui nous sommes est moins important que ce que nous voulons. Et nous voulons tout pour tout le monde. Nous serons sans visage car nous refusons le spectacle mediatique, nous serons sans visage car le carnaval nous attend, nous serons sans visage car le monde est a l'envers, nous serons sans visage car nous sommes partout. Se cacher le visage, c'est montrer que nos paroles, nos reves et notre imagination comptent plus que nos biographies. Se cacher le visage, c'est retrouver la force de nos voix et de nos actes. En portant des masques, nous devenons visibles.

Carnaval contre le capital
20-22 avril 2001 Quebec

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