Jim Buresch


I am painter/ artist who creates colossal outdoor installations such as a replica of Arlington National Cemetery for World AIDS Day in 1991 and in 2014, again for World AIDS Day, I created a mile and half long Red Ribbon in St. Petersburg Fl.  In 1999 I covered the side of an apartment building overlooking San Francisco's Castro Street with a gigantic pink triangle that said "Keep the Castor Queer" in an quixotic fight against that city's gentrification. 

I’m a trained journalist having wrote for a gay newspaper in South Florida after a decade as Senior Project Manager for Wells Fargo in San Francisco where I was an active part of the original ACT UP San Francisco as well as working for Dennis Peron’s first in the world medical marijuana buyers club. Politically, I’ve worked for CA Prop 215 legalizing medical marijuana and in Washington on that states passage of legalizing gay marriage. In Palm Springs it was an honor to serve on the Stonewall Democrat’s Board as Vice-President and a field organizer in opposing the passage of the anti-gay Knight Initiative.

I am also a recovering party circuit drug addict with over a decade clean but a lot of what I went through is still reflected in my paintings. I would like to think that the sex, drugs, and good times, as well as the unyielding truth of poor choices and recovery are reflected in my paintings.

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With a love of color and motion my paintings reflect my feelings, viewpoint, and passion.  I do what I do and I am what I am and nothing more or less.  I've not shown at the Whitney or MOMA, yet.  

My journey with HIV started out in West Virginia in 1989 where my first boyfriend died with KS encompassing his beautiful face. I took the reins of the Huntington AIDS Task Force and tried to make a dent but the genocide hit the coal fields just as hard as the Village, the Castro and your hometown. And that’s why I do what I do. Their memories haunt me still. I’ve lost hundreds of friends from coast to coast as I tried to out run death since my own HIV Positive diagnosis on April Fools Day 1991. If you can see what I see in many of my paintings you'll see their faces too.

Now at the very old age of 46 I feel like Tina Turner must have while singing 'Disco Inferno' but knowing she was ready to Rock and Roll again.  I am grateful to be alive, to have what I have, but in accepting this unexpected life I have an aching that's awoke.  I also ache for a cure not another bandage.

I plan on doing another World AIDS Day Red Ribbon installation again but bigger and better having learned many lessons from the project in 2014, as well a couple other over-the-top art installs.


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