“Before it opened as OVERTHROW NYC — the boxing gym I founded in May 2015 — this was the home of the Yippies [formally, the Youth International Party], a group founded by [activist] ABBIE HOFFMAN and others in the 1960s.
The name OVERTHROW, which was totally different at first, was adopted after I found old copies of ‘Overthrow,’ a Yippie newspaper that was published in the building. ‘How perfect,’ I thought. The idea behind my gym was born from underground fight parties I began attending in 2012, for which male models and others would meet at secret locations to box.
While those matches were by no means official, the events’ senses of DANGER and SECRECY made them amazing parties. The minute I saw this space, I knew it was the place to take that concept and run with it. When I walked in and smelled the piss odor left behind by the cats who’d been living here, my goal was to create something inspired by the building’s history as a home for activists.
The remaining Yippies, who I’m still pretty cool with, gave me a bunch of stuff in addition to their newspapers, some of which are hanging here. And when the boxing ring isn’t being used for training or our quarterly fight nights, we’ll do performances and debates in it to honor that underground culture.”
“I’ve struck up a genuine friendship with ALICE TORBUSH, a former publisher of the ‘Yipster Times’ and ‘Overthrow,’ both newspapers once published and printed here. I believe ‘NY IS KILLING ME’ [at right], which I framed, originally appeared in the ‘Yipster Times.’ The other framed poster is from a 1978 copy of ‘Overthrow.’”
“We get our neon signs made on DELANCEY STREET [in New York City]. Downstairs, where we also train, can get very, very packed.
There’s a lot of sweat pouring.”
“We’ll play anything on the old TVs, from THE ROBIN BYRD SHOW, to videos by A$AP ROCKY, to stuff by ROBERT FRANK. Together, they’re always broadcasting a snapshot of culture.”
“The ceilings are tin, and original to the building.”
“I work on OVERTHROW’s apparel, gloves, and other products with my business partner and art director, JOHN GAGLIANO. The second ‘g’ in his last name is silent, so I often have to note that, no, he’s not THE John Galliano.”
“I bought this picture on eBay from MICHAEL ALIG — the [New York City] CLUB KID TURNED KILLER portrayed by Macaulay Culkin in Party Monster. Michael sent it to me himself.”
Photography bySania Tharani
As told toAnthony Rotunno
Joey Goodwin is the New York City-based owner of Overthrow NYC.
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