Fencing is a critical architectural component of private property, the capitalist’s quiet violence against the land that would otherwise be held in common. Fences restrict the movement of people and of other animals, disrupting the natural movement of life.
Boltcutters provide a modern reference to the direct actions of the Diggers in the 17th century England, and here I suggest their historical relationship to the White Caps/Gorras Blancas in the 19th century American Southwest. Both of these organizations attacked the encroachment of private land ownership by simply cutting down and destroying fencing, blurring the lines that had been drawn unnecessarily over the land.
A truly egalitarian society demands the dissolution of the lofty concept of private property. Use the tools at hand!
The bolt cutters in this print are one of the hand-cut elements from my design for our newest collaborative portfolio, Territorio y Libertad, with Escuela de Cultura Popular Mártires del 68. The red background layer was cut from a piece of plywood.
There are two variations on this print: a second edition of the original on Yellow Ochre paper, and a new small edition on Light Gray Speckled paper. Both editions were printed on Jeanie, a refurbished Craftsmen Machine Co. Imperial platen press. This process creates slight variations in each individual print.
Trespass (v.) c. 1300, “transgress in some active manner, commit an aggressive offense, to sin,” from Old French trespasser “pass beyond or across, cross, traverse; infringe, violate,” from tres- “beyond” (from Latin trans; see trans-) + passer “go by, pass” (see pass [v.]).
Meaning “enter unlawfully” is first attested in forest laws of Scottish Parliament (c. 1455). [source]