About Not An Alternative

Not An Alternative (est. 2004) is a collective and non-profit organization that works at the intersection of art, activism and theory. It has a mission to affect popular understandings of events, symbols, institutions, and history. Through engaged critical research and design, the group curates and produces interventions on material and immaterial space, bringing together tools from art, architecture, exhibition design, and political organizing.

All these efforts are enacted with an eye towards social change and strategies for creative political intervention that involve creating points of entry for arts audiences and everyday citizens alike–not through a typical head-on (or head-butt) approach, but through the occupation and redeployment of popular vernacular, semiotics, and memes.

Not An Alternative’s performances, exhibitions, and presentations have been featured within art institutions such as Guggenheim (NY), PS1/MOMA (NY), Tate Modern (London), Victoria & Albert Museum (London), MOCAD (Detroit), and Museo del Arte Moderno (Mexico City), and in the public sphere, where they collaborate with community groups and activist mobilizations.

For more than a decade Not An Alternative hosted free lectures, screenings, panel discussions, workshops and artist presentations at their former studio in Brooklyn, NY. The space consisted of a production workshop, filming studio, video editing suite, and a coworking space for artists, activists, scholars, and cultural producers. The group’s members are now distributed across the U.S..

Our Team

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Ruth Miller (Łchavaya K’isen)

Ruth Miller (Łchavaya K’isen) is a Dena’ina Athabaskan and Ashkenazi Russian Jewish woman, raised in Dgheyay Kaq (Anchorage), Alaska. She is a member of the Curyung Tribe from the Lake Iliamna region, and also has roots in Bristol Bay. She is a recent graduate from Brown...
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Karina Yager (Quechua)

Karina is the Director of Education with The Natural History Museum, an ongoing project by Not An Alternative. Karina Yager has abundant experience working with Indigenous communities, museums, and in public and scientific outreach projects on some of today’s most pressing global challenges, from climate...
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Julian Brave Noisecat (Secwepemc/St’at’imc)

Julian is the Narrative Change Director with The Natural History Museum, an ongoing project by Not An Alternative. An award-winning writer and journalist, he is a contributing editor at Canadian Geographic and he wrote the foreword to the Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada. His work has appeared in The...
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Cassandra Begay (Diné)

Cassandra is the Director of Community Engagement with The Natural History Museum, an ongoing project by Not An Alternative. Yá’át’èèh shik’èí dóó shidine’è .Shí éí Cassandra Begay yinishyé. Tsi’naajinii nishłį́. Naakaii bashishchiin. Tódích’íí’nii dashicheii. Naakaii dashinalí. Ákót’éego diné asdzáán nishłį́. Hello family and relatives. My...
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Beka Economopoulos

Beka has more than 20 years of experience working in the arts, community and environmental justice organizing, and communications. She is a co-founder of The Natural History Museum, a founding member of the social justice arts collective Not An Alternative, co-organizer and Board Member of the...
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Jason Jones

Jason has worked as an art and activist organizer, curator, artist, and media producer for the last 20 years. He is the co-founder of Not An Alternative. His work has been featured in museums and art institutions internationally, and in the context of activist mobilizations....
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Steve Lyons

Steve is an artist, art historian, and core member of Not An Alternative. His work has been exhibited in art institutions internationally, and his writing has appeared in e-flux journal, Jacobin, The Guardian, and Scientific American. He holds a BFA from the University of Western...
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Kai Bosworth

Kai Bosworth is a PhD student in the department of Geography, Society and Environment at the University of Minnesota. He holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies from Macalester College and an M.A. in Geography from the University of Minnesota. Before beginning graduate school, he worked for nonprofits...
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Winnie Fung

Winner is currently the Director of Finance and Operations at Planned Parenthood Toronto. With over 10 years of non-profit management experience, she has held senior positions in artist-run centers in Canada and in the US. Previously she served as the Director of Business and Organizational Resources...
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Marisa Morán Jahn

Marisa Morán Jahn is an artist, multimedia designer, educator, and the founder of Studio REV-, a nonprofit organization whose public art projects and tools impact the lives of low-wage workers, immigrants, women, and youth. A graduate of MIT, Jahn has taught at MIT, the American Museum of...
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Josh Yoder

Josh Yoder has a BFA in Graphic and Interactive Design from Tyler School of Art, and experience in responsive web design and digital publishing. Past projects include flash websites, book illustration and cover design, and informational guides and pamphlets such as the Fracking Pamphlet and...
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Mon Iker

Mon Iker is a multimedia artist and producer with 7 years of experience in props production and scene painting for museum exhibits, gallery installations and main stage productions. She works in a range of fabrication techniques, from video and animation to silk screening and construction....
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Angela Tran

Ange Tran is a designer and visual communications strategist with a degree in Communication Design from Pratt Institute. As Principal Designer at Not An Alternative, she designed many of the graphic elements that came to signify the Occupy movement and Occupy Sandy relief efforts. She...
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Jonathan King

Jonathan King is a PhD student in Media and Communications at the European Graduate School in Switzerland. He is writing his dissertation on the concept of chance as it relates to the history of philosophy and the history of political organization. He has been involved...
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Ian Hart

Ian Hart was a founding member of Not An Alternative, active from 20014-2010. He worked for six years at the American Museum of Natural History as an exhibit preparator, artist, and conservation technician. He fabricated exhibits and installed artifacts for exhibitions on a wide range of...
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Jodi Dean

Jodi Dean is a political and media theorist who has been a core collaborator with Not an Alternative since 2010. She has given invited lectures in galleries, universities, and public fora around the world. Her most recent book is The Communist Horizon (Verso 2012). Previous...
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Winnie Fung

Winnie Fung was a founding member of Not An Alternative, acting as a director of operations, creative strategist, and visual producer. Winnie has held senior positions in artist-run centers in Canada and in the US. She is currently the Director of Business and Organizational Resources...
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Anjali Cadambi

Anjali recently finished her BA in Sociology and Studio Art at Swarthmore College. Anjali was a core collaborator with Not An Alternative from 2011-2013. She has been integral to strategic planning, concept development, and project execution. She writes copy for a variety of contexts and...
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Arielle Lawson

Arielle Lawson is currently pursuing an M.A. in Urban Planning at Hunter College, and she is recent graduate of Macalester College where she studied sociology and environmental studies. As the EcoDistrict Outreach Coordinator for the Lutheran Volunteer Corps in Seattle she provided soup to nuts...
 
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Shelley Means (Ojibwe/Lakota)

Shelley Means (White Earth Ojibwe/Oglala Lakota) is a mother and Indigenous-community consultant, facilitator and volunteer who lives with her family in the traditional territories of the S’Homamish (Puyallup) people, on Vashon Island, Washington. Shelley is Trainer & Projects Coordinator with the Native Organizers Alliance; Coordinator for...
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Rosalyn LaPier (Blackfeet / Métis)

Rosalyn is an award winning Indigenous writer, ethnobotanist and environmental activist with a BA in physics and PhD in environmental history. She works within Indigenous communities to revitalize Indigenous & traditional ecological knowledge (TEK), to address environmental justice & the climate crisis, and to strengthen public...
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Alexis Bunten (Aleut/Yup’ik)

Alexis Bunten, (Aleut/Yup’ik) is co-director of the Bioneers Indigeneity Program. She has served as a manager, consultant and applied researcher for Indigenous, social and environmental programming for over 15 years. After receiving a BA in Art History at Dartmouth College, Alexis returned to Alaska, where...
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Judith LeBlanc (Caddo)

Judith is a registered member of the Caddo Tribe of Oklahoma, a core team member of Not An Alternative, and the Director of the Native Organizers Alliance, a national Native organizing network which provides Native organizers, tribal governments and non-profits with trainings and support for strategic...
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Lise Van Susteran

Dr. Lise Van Susteren is an American psychiatrist in private practice in Washington, DC with a special interest in the psychological effects of climate change. Dr. Van Susteren is a frequent commentator on television and publishes a blog at the Huffington Post. She hosted a weekly...
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Marc Weiss

Marc N. Weiss is best known as the creator and first Executive Producer of P.O.V., the award-winning documentary series now preparing for its 25th season on PBS. He has been a leader in the independent film and media movement for 40 years, as a filmmaker,...
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Laura Raicovich

Laura Raicovich is dedicated to art and artistic production that relies on complexity, poetics, and care to create a more engaged and equitable civic realm. Until recently, she served as President and Executive Director of the Queens Museum where she oversaw an inviting and vital commons...
 

Exhibitions

2021

Kwel' Hoy: We Draw The Line, Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, Washington D.C.

2020

Whale People: Outdoor Exhibition and IMAX-style Film Projection at Lummi Nation

2019

Like the Waters We Rise: Climate Justice in Print, Interference Archive + Nathan Cummings Foundation Gallery, NY

Offsetted, Curated by Cooking Sections, Arthur Ross Architecture Gallery, Columbia University, NY

2018

Whale People: Protectors of the Sea, Co-Created with Lummi Nation, Florida Museum of Natural History, Gainesville

The Idea of the Avant Garde, Curated by Marc James Leger, NeMe Arts Centre, Cyprus

Kwel Hoy': Many Struggles, One Front, Co-Created with Lummi Nation, Watershed Center, Princeton

2017

Kwel Hoy': We Draw The Line, co-created with Lummi Nation, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Pittsburgh

The Museum of the Future, as part of Hold These Truths, curated by No Longer Empty at Nathan Cummings Foundation

2016

The Natural History Museum, American Alliance of Museums Convention, Washington D.C.

Agitprop!, Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn

Mining the HMNS, Project Row Houses, Houston

2015

The Natural History Museum, Association of Science and Technology Centers Convention, Montreal

The Natural History Museum, American Alliance of Museums Annual Convention, Atlanta

The Museum of the Future @ Eyebeam Showcase, Gallery 216, Brooklyn

This Changes Everything, Foundry Theatre, NY

2014

The Natural History Museum Grand Opening, Queens Museum of Art, NY

Disobedient Objects, Victoria & Albert Museum, London

Art or Sound, Fondazione Prada - Ca' Corner Della Regina, Venice

2013

Beyond Zuccotti Park, Sao Paulo Architecture Biennial, Sao Paulo

From Zuccotti to Taksim: Negotiating the Right to the City through Public Space, Hazel & Robert Siegel, Gallery, Pratt University, Brooklyn

2012

Occupy Their Desire, Our Haus, Austrian Cultural Forum, NY

Occupied Real Estate, Collective/Performance, Exit Art, NY

2011

Occupy Everything, Stadtmuseum Graz, Austria

2010

Alternative Histories, Exit Art, NY

Tomorrow is Another Day (After the Economic Crisis), No Soul for Sale, Tate Modern, London

2009

City From Below, Baltimore, NY

The Subsumption Machine, Mixer: Expo, Eyebeam, NY

Not An Alternative Presents, X Initiative, NY

2008

Friendly Fire, NY Art Book Fair, Printed Matter, NY

2007

Festival Break 2.4: Potempkin Village, International Festival of Contemporary Art, Ljubljana

2006

When Artists Say We, Artists Space, NY

2005

Traverse the Fantasy, Art in the Contested City, Higgins Gallery, Pratt University, Brooklyn

2004

Majority Whipped, Majority Whip, White Box, NY

Supporters

A Blade of Grass

Puffin Foundation

Chorus Foundation

Eyebeam Center for Art & Technology

Voqal Fund

Brooklyn Arts Council

The Public Society

Overbrook Foundation

Horton Foundation Fund

Compton Foundation

Benoona Fund of RSF Social Finance

Andy Warhol Foundation

The New York Community Trust

Solidaire

Argosy Foundation

Wallace Global Fund

LUSH Charity Pot

Patagonia Foundation

Invoking The Pause

Heinz Foundation

Beespace NYC

Hewlett Foundation

Scintilla Foundation

 
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Shelley Means (Ojibwe/Lakota)

Shelley Means (White Earth Ojibwe/Oglala Lakota) is a mother and Indigenous-community consultant, facilitator and volunteer who lives with her family in the traditional territories of the S’Homamish (Puyallup) people, on Vashon Island, Washington. Shelley is Trainer & Projects Coordinator with the Native Organizers Alliance; Coordinator for...
team_image

Rosalyn LaPier (Blackfeet / Métis)

Rosalyn is an award winning Indigenous writer, ethnobotanist and environmental activist with a BA in physics and PhD in environmental history. She works within Indigenous communities to revitalize Indigenous & traditional ecological knowledge (TEK), to address environmental justice & the climate crisis, and to strengthen public...
team_image

Alexis Bunten (Aleut/Yup’ik)

Alexis Bunten, (Aleut/Yup’ik) is co-director of the Bioneers Indigeneity Program. She has served as a manager, consultant and applied researcher for Indigenous, social and environmental programming for over 15 years. After receiving a BA in Art History at Dartmouth College, Alexis returned to Alaska, where...
team_image

Ruth Miller (Łchavaya K’isen)

Ruth Miller (Łchavaya K’isen) is a Dena’ina Athabaskan and Ashkenazi Russian Jewish woman, raised in Dgheyay Kaq (Anchorage), Alaska. She is a member of the Curyung Tribe from the Lake Iliamna region, and also has roots in Bristol Bay. She is a recent graduate from Brown...
team_image

Judith LeBlanc (Caddo)

Judith is a registered member of the Caddo Tribe of Oklahoma, a core team member of Not An Alternative, and the Director of the Native Organizers Alliance, a national Native organizing network which provides Native organizers, tribal governments and non-profits with trainings and support for strategic...
team_image

Karina Yager (Quechua)

Karina is the Director of Education with The Natural History Museum, an ongoing project by Not An Alternative. Karina Yager has abundant experience working with Indigenous communities, museums, and in public and scientific outreach projects on some of today’s most pressing global challenges, from climate...
team_image

Julian Brave Noisecat (Secwepemc/St’at’imc)

Julian is the Narrative Change Director with The Natural History Museum, an ongoing project by Not An Alternative. An award-winning writer and journalist, he is a contributing editor at Canadian Geographic and he wrote the foreword to the Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada. His work has appeared in The...
team_image

Cassandra Begay (Diné)

Cassandra is the Director of Community Engagement with The Natural History Museum, an ongoing project by Not An Alternative. Yá’át’èèh shik’èí dóó shidine’è .Shí éí Cassandra Begay yinishyé. Tsi’naajinii nishłį́. Naakaii bashishchiin. Tódích’íí’nii dashicheii. Naakaii dashinalí. Ákót’éego diné asdzáán nishłį́. Hello family and relatives. My...
team_image

Lise Van Susteran

Dr. Lise Van Susteren is an American psychiatrist in private practice in Washington, DC with a special interest in the psychological effects of climate change. Dr. Van Susteren is a frequent commentator on television and publishes a blog at the Huffington Post. She hosted a weekly...
team_image

Marc Weiss

Marc N. Weiss is best known as the creator and first Executive Producer of P.O.V., the award-winning documentary series now preparing for its 25th season on PBS. He has been a leader in the independent film and media movement for 40 years, as a filmmaker,...
team_image

Laura Raicovich

Laura Raicovich is dedicated to art and artistic production that relies on complexity, poetics, and care to create a more engaged and equitable civic realm. Until recently, she served as President and Executive Director of the Queens Museum where she oversaw an inviting and vital commons...
team_image

Winnie Fung

Winner is currently the Director of Finance and Operations at Planned Parenthood Toronto. With over 10 years of non-profit management experience, she has held senior positions in artist-run centers in Canada and in the US. Previously she served as the Director of Business and Organizational Resources...
team_image

Marisa Morán Jahn

Marisa Morán Jahn is an artist, multimedia designer, educator, and the founder of Studio REV-, a nonprofit organization whose public art projects and tools impact the lives of low-wage workers, immigrants, women, and youth. A graduate of MIT, Jahn has taught at MIT, the American Museum of...
team_image

Beka Economopoulos

Beka has more than 20 years of experience working in the arts, community and environmental justice organizing, and communications. She is a co-founder of The Natural History Museum, a founding member of the social justice arts collective Not An Alternative, co-organizer and Board Member of the...
team_image

Jason Jones

Jason has worked as an art and activist organizer, curator, artist, and media producer for the last 20 years. He is the co-founder of Not An Alternative. His work has been featured in museums and art institutions internationally, and in the context of activist mobilizations....
team_image

Josh Yoder

Josh Yoder has a BFA in Graphic and Interactive Design from Tyler School of Art, and experience in responsive web design and digital publishing. Past projects include flash websites, book illustration and cover design, and informational guides and pamphlets such as the Fracking Pamphlet and...
team_image

Mon Iker

Mon Iker is a multimedia artist and producer with 7 years of experience in props production and scene painting for museum exhibits, gallery installations and main stage productions. She works in a range of fabrication techniques, from video and animation to silk screening and construction....
team_image

Steve Lyons

Steve is an artist, art historian, and core member of Not An Alternative. His work has been exhibited in art institutions internationally, and his writing has appeared in e-flux journal, Jacobin, The Guardian, and Scientific American. He holds a BFA from the University of Western...
team_image

Angela Tran

Ange Tran is a designer and visual communications strategist with a degree in Communication Design from Pratt Institute. As Principal Designer at Not An Alternative, she designed many of the graphic elements that came to signify the Occupy movement and Occupy Sandy relief efforts. She...
team_image

Jonathan King

Jonathan King is a PhD student in Media and Communications at the European Graduate School in Switzerland. He is writing his dissertation on the concept of chance as it relates to the history of philosophy and the history of political organization. He has been involved...
team_image

Ian Hart

Ian Hart was a founding member of Not An Alternative, active from 20014-2010. He worked for six years at the American Museum of Natural History as an exhibit preparator, artist, and conservation technician. He fabricated exhibits and installed artifacts for exhibitions on a wide range of...
team_image

Jodi Dean

Jodi Dean is a political and media theorist who has been a core collaborator with Not an Alternative since 2010. She has given invited lectures in galleries, universities, and public fora around the world. Her most recent book is The Communist Horizon (Verso 2012). Previous...
team_image

Winnie Fung

Winnie Fung was a founding member of Not An Alternative, acting as a director of operations, creative strategist, and visual producer. Winnie has held senior positions in artist-run centers in Canada and in the US. She is currently the Director of Business and Organizational Resources...
team_image

Anjali Cadambi

Anjali recently finished her BA in Sociology and Studio Art at Swarthmore College. Anjali was a core collaborator with Not An Alternative from 2011-2013. She has been integral to strategic planning, concept development, and project execution. She writes copy for a variety of contexts and...
team_image

Kai Bosworth

Kai Bosworth is a PhD student in the department of Geography, Society and Environment at the University of Minnesota. He holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies from Macalester College and an M.A. in Geography from the University of Minnesota. Before beginning graduate school, he worked for nonprofits...
team_image

Arielle Lawson

Arielle Lawson is currently pursuing an M.A. in Urban Planning at Hunter College, and she is recent graduate of Macalester College where she studied sociology and environmental studies. As the EcoDistrict Outreach Coordinator for the Lutheran Volunteer Corps in Seattle she provided soup to nuts...
 
 

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