New Documentary Release: INDECLINE Presents “Side Hustles”


To highlight their accomplishments and escapades during 2021 Indecline debuts a full feature movie titled “Side Hustles” today.

Ultimately, it’s a show reel of greatest hits by the activist subverters of public space called InDecline – loosely strung together by an ongoing skit of a formal job interview that seeks to further illuminate the message, but sometimes tires. Anonymous by necessity, this mid-length docu-portfolio gives little indication of the origination of the mainly young, mainly white, and mainly male masked American protagonists of the street art/performance art scene, but you have an idea that it is their politics and disgust that bind them as one.

The various installations range in skill, sophistication, and maturity – but something invariably impresses about each campaign. Clever Photoshop and elbow grease, and you’ve got yourself a subversive art installation that mocks both Easter and Q-Anon. A harrowing cable scaling of a massive statue of Christ to hang a pro-abortion banner looks far more dangerous and physically demanding.

Subverting a billboard to encourage masturbation is perhaps a bit of comic relief from the far heavier topics they target: Busting anti-abortion billboards to offer abortion services contact information, shining a light on police violence, and offering a no-holds barred criticism of a culture that births weekly mass shootings in cities nationwide.

Their methods may be driven by the economics of printing and installing their brand of détournement but the effect can be stunning and direct. A billboard showing off a gunmakers line of ammo says proudly “Born Here. Built Here” across a silhouette of the US map. It infers a national pride, a dedication to the 2nd Amendment, a nod to blue collar labor, and a healthy wallop of xenophobic distrust. InDecline simply replaces one word so the slogan says “Born Here. Killed Here” to refocus attention to the bodies piling up from coast to coast.

Whether its riding freights to spread the ashes of a friend or an earnestly rageful powerchord punk and/or bluegrass country soundtrack or the corporate cluelessness of local news footage, if you stay for the full ride you see the themes that drive the work – and feel a hopeful promise, and a sense of dread.

Canaries in the coal mine for a decade or so in public space, InDecline’s multiple acts of art show how the trendlines all merge. By the time you are finished with the list of societal/political/socio-economic ills that InDecline is addressing through their guerilla art installations, you realize that the country they are responding to is already in the midst of a civil war and the forward path is scabrous.

Previous interventions BSA reported on appear HERE, HERE, HERE, AND HERE.