Saturday, January 23, 2016

Remembering the Occudome

The construction of the Occudome at Occupy Santa Cruz in 2011 represented a radical act of reclaiming public space, and the physical structure itself became an object of affection to many involved in the movement. I was looking through my archives and found this set of photos that document activities at the Occudome over the course of its lifespan. Most of these photos have never been published before.

Early in November of 2011, members of Occupy Santa Cruz constructed a large, geodesic dome next to the steps of the Santa Cruz Court House, which was the location the group held their general assemblies every day for months. The structure served as a shelter space that was separate from the large Occupy encampment located steps away in the San Lorenzo Park Benchlands. It would soon be named, the "Occudome." Individuals use of the dome evolved everyday. Inside it were couches, a kitchenette, a tower heater, audio equipment and musical instruments, and information tables. Artwork adorned the interior walls. At one point occupiers installed a solar panel on its exterior.

Inside the dome during a general assembly

An occupier warming their face

Solar panel

Empathy Cafe

"Dome is Where the Heart Is"

"Police Are Puppets"

A tribute to the dome

The early days of the Occudome

Gathering before an Occupy Santa Cruz march

Using the Occudome to dry clothing

Santa Cruz Sheriffs eventually made a move in early December of that year to dismantle the Occudome, arriving outfitted in riot gear and blocking off Water Street during the process. For an excellent photo essay by Bradley Allen that documents the destruction of the dome, see:
Santa Cruz Co. Sheriff's Dept. Dismantles Occupy Santa Cruz Geodesic Dome and Structures at Courthouse

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