IRA COHEN – UPDATE! Influential Poet, Artist and Filmmaker NEEDS HELP!

by Flame Schon

(Editor’s note: This article is copied and pasted from the FaceBook Page)

Photo by Gerard Malanga

LINK TO FACE BOOK FUNDRAISING PAGE created By – Ondi McMaster & Will Swofford Cameron

UPDATE: (The original post is below this update)

Ondi McMaster – I picked Ira up on the 27th for what I thought was a victorious day of returning him to his home after the fumigation. We paid a cleaning crew $300 to come in and clean up all the fumigation dust, Raphael was right beside them all cleaning for 4 hours breathing in the toxicity. I brought Ira into the apt at 4:30pm after spending the day with nowhere to be( in a movie theater then a cafe). I went out shortly after we arrived to buy new sheets, new towels and the like. When I returned, Ira was sitting in the chair he always sits in, he was talking on the phone to a friend and I saw 2 bedbugs climbing on that chair. I had to immediately remove Ira from the premises with a distraught Raphael and his aged aid besides, we sat in the lobby for 3 hours trying to figure out where to take Ira. No one had offered anything anywhere, we had a crisis. All hotels were booked. We had no $ because thousands are already spent. Absurdly I had already bought Ira a new $800 couch which couldn’t be delivered. Raphael and I both live in 5 floor walkups with no AC, these were inconceivable options, no one was around to say “bring him to my house.” So we found a different hotel this time at $250 a night for 2 nights on the UWS so his nurse aid has a place to spend the night with him and give him proper care(insulin et al). He is now moved back to the Woogoo Apts while a second fumigation goes on.

The prep crews came back in at the landlord’s newest demands to pull up the carpet and now throw all of the furniture(including the antiques away and cart off the remaining framed to be unframed artworks to storage). Our new cost for all of this is somewhere around $15,000.

You can retort all this safely from behind your computers but the only way Ira will be able to maintain his tenant status with the landlord and the 24 hour nurse aid care is by complying with these options and not shaking up the legal system as so many would suggest. Ira is not mobile and his family is under other duress which we can only slightly understand when we suggest courts et al.

HOW TO HELP AT THIS POINT:

Rise up and think of positive ways to raise money for Ira. We have his films available for showing at gatherings/benefits? Do you know off any agencies to apply for immediate grants? Any generous friends who may be appeased with a signed photograph for a grand donation? Forward this letter through facebook. Repost it on literary sites. LINK TO FACE BOOK FUNDRAISING PAGE created By – Ondi McMaster & Will Swofford Cameron

IRA CANNOT AFFORD THIS. HE HANDLES IT WELL BECAUSE HE TRUSTS THAT WE ARE TRYING TO HELP HIM.
This is our critical mass – ????? if we cannot pay.

I have only raised $6500 and the most generous donations of $1000 came from one of Ira’s newest friends in the UK, a poets in need grant of $3500 raised by M.R. and by MY friends who don’t even have a connection to IRA. I do not overlook those friends of Ira who have nothing and even sent in $10-$50 — you know who you are.

PLEASE help, any amount of donation is appreciated. We need help to make sure we can pay this and make sure Ira can return to his home in peace and his archives are treated and returned in good condition. Please help if you will. No act of kindness or generosity is overlooked.

Please pass this on through your networks to generous souls who appreciate what Ira stood for his whole life, ENLIGHTENED CULTURE!!!!

ORIGINAL POST BELOW:

IRA COHEN, for those of you who do not know who he is, his artistic reach is far and wide. I suggest you click this link before going further:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ira_Cohen

Ira is holed up in a UWS tiny hotel since last Tuesday ($1000 a week and that’s cheap NYC) while his creme de la creme archives are being removed from his apartment premises for the exorbitant cost of $9000, to insure the corporate landlord that his apartment is properly fumigated on Monday the 26th against bedbugs, which we all know are rampant in urban centers across the U.S., though the landlord is holding Ira responsible for the whole building should they move anywhere else anytime soon.

PLEASE help, any amount of donation is appreciated. We need help to make sure we can pay this and make sure Ira can return to his home in peace and his archives are treated and returned in good condition. He, at this point, is completely broke.

We were able to get the “Poets in Need” artist grant by special efforts of Michael Rothenberg (Big Bridge) in the amount of $3500 and we have raised about $1000 amongst his artist friends. So, that is positive but we are no where near a halfway point.

Please help if you can, if you will. No act of kindness or generosity is overlooked. Please pass this on through your networks to literary and artist friends who may know of him or his work.

I may also post some artworks/services for auction on this site if anyone cannot give money. I will accept such offers on the behalf of IRA. There is no end until we reach our goal. Please send images, details and reserve amount to my email – omfineart@gmail.com

If you want to pay by credit card, I suggest PayPal. If you choose “Personal” and they do not take a percentage.

PayPal – artegiano@earthlink.net

To send a check by snail mail:

The check should be made out to JANICE HONIG, Ira’s sister who is handling a bank acct for him.

Janice Honig
45 East 89th street #22e
NY, NY 10128
Tel#2129873806

or to me:
Ondi McMaster
52 Bank street #5
NYC, NY 10014

Ira can be reached by phone (if you have his number) but we ask, since he is anxious and disturbed by all this, to speak softly on the subject, tickle him don’t taunt him.

Please email me at omfineart@gmail.com for more info on how to reach him directly.

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4 Comments

  1. ondi McMaster says:

    thank you, thank you
    lovely job with beautiful images

  2. Flame Schon says:

    Here’s 2 links to good publications. One is an issue of Goodie Magazine , issue #1 about Ira Cohen and the other a link to a book of his. I think they may both be available.
    http://www.goodie.org/pantherbooks/cohen.html
    http://www.goodie.org/goodiemag/01cohen.html

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