actions for chicago torture justice

Actions for Chicago Torture Justice is an accumulating archive of actions created by both Lucky Pierre and the public in response to the Chicago police torture cases. The torture, inflicted by the Chicago Police from 1972 to 1992, involved over 110 victims – all African Americans from Chicago’s south side.  The piece is a part of  for speculative monument proposals to memorialize the Chicago police torture cases.

Lucky Pierre began the project in October 2012 as an answer to the call by The Chicago Torture Justice Memorial Project (add link ) for speculative monument proposals to memorialize the Chicago police torture cases. 

Actions for Chicago Torture Justice has been presented at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago Sullivan Galleries (Chicago), Speckstrasse Gängeviertel (Hamburg), and The Co-Prosperity Sphere (Chicago). A performed version of the piece was presented at the Bug House Square Debates (Chicago)   


Booklet published by Half Letter Press and Temporary Services documents the first 100 actions generated by the project. 


  • Swim out to the sea.  There’s a point between salt and freshwater where everybody can float forever.  Find that point. 
  • Love your brother.

  • Speak of police violence and abuse of power when it feels most uncomfortable.  Practice speaking out.

  • Examine systems of revenge, of justice, of forgiveness.

  • Be kind.

  • Hit them where it hurts.

  • Let sun and soil touch. Let the skin and soul of loved ones embrace on unlimited visits.

  • Make sure no one’s blood is on your hands.

  • Obliterate cages.

  • Try to reach.

  • Never do harm to someone (unless they’re trying to kill/harm you… and then it’s okay because it’s self-defense).

  • Hold yourself up to hyper-real standards of success and beauty.

  • Imagine one of your loved ones is arrested, tortured into confessing to something you know he hasn’t done, and imprisoned for life.  Make a list of options available to you.  Make a list of your feelings.  Write down what you will say to his 9 year old daughter.

  • Try to imagine the torturer as a child.

  • Hug someone you have recently met.

  • Kiss the mouth of convicts.

  • Kiss me.

  • Listen.

  • Understand the humanity in people.

  • Identify your enemies.  Be extremely kind, generous, and polite to them.

  • Talk about this torture as much as possible.

  • Take a photograph of something you love.  Enclose it in a letter to someone on the inside.  Ask them what they want you to photograph and send them next. Tell them you care.

  • Imagine a world without cages and borders.  Make it happen.

  • Be lost.

  • Read everything in this book.

  • Write to your congressional representatives.

  • Tear the sky down.

  • Respect all people.

  • Free Demond Weston.

  • Go to where it happened.  Fill the room with concrete.  Make it solid.

  • Spread love like violence.

  • Love, but never speak of it.

  • Never love.

  • Wash your hands.

  • Withdraw.

  • Wrap your lips around the nearest set of bones; alternate between blowing them kisses and gnawing to the marrow.

  • See the potential torturer inside all of us.

  • Cut off all your hair.  Do it by yourself or have your mom do it for you.  Get a tattoo on top of your head.  Let your hair grow back between the lines.

  • Make friends, fake being happy, be alone in your mind.  Always.

  • See all the people as people.

  • Wait for something.