In Search of a Revolution: Photos From Occupy Austin

John Anderson documents sit-ins, protests, and standoffs with police in the Texas capital.

<a href="">John Anderson</a>

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As a photographer for the Austin Chronicle, John Anderson found himself at the forefront of documenting the Occupy movement in the Texas capitol. From October 6, 2011, when protestors took over City Hall, through the Occupy anniversaries held in 2013, Anderson photographed the movement’s sit-ins, street protests, clashes with police, and court proceedings. The result is his recently published photo book, titled In Search of a Revolution.

While the Occupy faction in Oakland, California, gained notoriety for its violent street battles with local police, and the Zuccotti Park crowd, of course, launched the whole thing, the Austin branch had the distinction of being infiltrated by undercover police officers, whom Anderson wound up photographing unwittingly. His book provides a visual documentation of Occupy Austin’s role in the wider movement. Here’s a short selection from its dozens of images. (All photos copyright John Anderson.)

Protesters and police at City Hall. (October 6, 2011)

March on Bank of America. (October 7, 2011)

Occupier Cindy McDonald in front of a CHASE Bank. (October 10, 2011)

City Hall occupiers await a morning sweep that was later called off. (October 14, 2011)

Marching from the Capitol to the University of Texas campus. (December 3, 2011)

“Fuck the Police” march. (February 3, 2012)

Corey Williams is the first arrest as occupiers are evicted from City Hall. (February 3, 2012)

Occupiers gather outside Travis County Jail post-eviction to greet released protesters.

A few occupiers attend a City Council meeting to address homelessness, their eviction, and a city resolution (it passed) to divest from Bank of America. (March 1, 2011)

Protesters floated signs outside the windows of Stratfor to protest the firm’s involvement in the law enforcement infiltration of Occupy Austin. (March 5, 2012)

Undercover officers Rick Reza (left and far right) and Shannon “Butch” Dowell, who posed as occupiers, took these photos—which the city released in response to a subpoena.

Protesters rally outside of police headquarters to protest the infiltration of their group. (September 5, 2012)

“Overpass Light Brigade.” (October 27, 2012)

Celebrating the anniversary of Occupy Austin’s eviction from City Hall. (February 3, 2013)

In an appendix, author Anderson highlights undercover officers spotted in his photos.


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