On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Tompkins Square Riot, Lower East Side documentarian Clayton Patterson is screening his entire videotape recording of what transpired that night. Tomorrow night the Anthology Film Archives is screening the entire tape — all 213 minutes of it.
Here's the description from the Anthology website:
TOMPKINS SQUARE PARK POLICE RIOT AUGUST 1988
1988, 213 min, video, b&w, 7 p.m.
Clayton Patterson’s life changed dramatically on the night of August 6-7, 1988 when he gained notoriety for videotaping the Tompkins Square Park police riot in which the NYPD violently clashed with protesters and park dwellers until the sun came up the next day. In what was the first of many legal cases for Patterson concerning artists’ rights to their work and freedom of expression, he was arrested and jailed for refusing to give up his tape which is the only concrete account of what really happened that night.
The actions of officers against neighborhood residents, homeless individuals, affordable housing advocates, anarchists, squatters, and others resulted in the filing of over 100 complaints of police brutality. This footage was important evidence in the investigations and legal proceedings that followed, and several officers were disciplined or criminally indicted. The city also paid an estimated $2-3 million in settlements to the injured.
Despite the tape’s infamy, few have ever actually seen it…especially in its entirety. Here, on the 25th anniversary of its creation, we’re going to change that.
Clayton Patterson will be in person to present the screening
You can see a trailer of the film at Clayton's website.
Also this week, the New Museum is screening "Clayton Patterson: From the Underground and Below," a collection of short documentary films, on Thursday night.