Your Nostalgia Is Killing Me
catalyst for conversation about AIDS and visual culture
Visual AIDS and the New York Public Library hosted a public conversation about the role art, representation, nostalgia, memory, history, social media, and the present play in the ongoing HIV/AIDS crisis.
Recent conversations about nostalgia served as the starting point for the event with “Your Nostalgia is Killing Me” poster artists Vincent Chevalier and Ian Bradley-Perrin, artist Avram Finkelstein, and writer John Weir. Moderator Patrick "Pato" Hebert, with assistance from Tamara Oyola-Santiago, Brittany Duck, Ted Kerr, and Ella Boudreau ensured a diversity of voices from within the room are part of the conversation.
Watch a recording of the event on YouTube.
- "As We Canonize Certain Producers of Culture...", Vincent Chevalier and Ian Bradley-Perrin in interview with Visual AIDS
- "Within Our Rooms of Our Nostalgia", Visual AIDS Programs Manager Ted Kerr writes about the "Your Nostalgia Poster" and related conversation for In The Flesh
- "The Failures of the Past Are Still With Us", Ian Bradley-Perrin's comments from the NYPL event
- "On Organizing and Your Nostalgia is Killing Me", Kerr writes about some thinking behind the NYPL event
Ian Bradley-Perrin is currently working on a Masters degree in History at Concordia University which explores the intersection of lived and embodied experiences of HIV/AIDS with public health systems in the context of Quebec nationalism in the 1990's. He has worked as an community organizer in Montreal for the past five years with projects such as Radicale Queer Semaine and Pervers/cité and currently coordinates the Concordia University Community Lecture Series on HIV/AIDS and the Plus ou Moins Open Conference on HIV/AIDS. He is also currently working as a Fellow of the Centre for Ethnographic Research and Exhibition in the Aftermath of Violence on a project exploring experiences of criminalization of non-disclosure in a global context, through oral testimony of HIV-positive transnationals in Montreal and through an engagement with community organizations which facilitate this transition.
Vincent Chevalier (b. 1983) hails from Montreal, Quebec where he completed a BFA in Intermedia/Cyberarts at Concordia University in 2011. Using disclosure as the conceptual basis for his artistic practice, he examines the ethical and political stakes of public sexuality. His video, installation, and performances range from the concrete to the virtual and take place in a variety of settings including the street, in galleries, and on the web. He has exhibited across Canada, the USA, and Europe. Currently, he lives in Peterborough, Ontario where he works as the Media Arts Coordinator at ARTSPACE.
Avram Finkelstein is an artist and writer living in Brooklyn. His work has shown at The Cooper Hewitt Museum, Kunsthalle Wien, and The Leslie Lohman Museum, and is in the permanent collections of MoMA, The Whitney, The Metropolitan Museum, The New Museum, The Smithsonian, The Brooklyn Museum, The Victoria and Albert Museum and The New York Public Library. Finkelstein is a founding member of the collective responsible for Silence=Death and AIDSGATE and he is a founding member of the art collective, Gran Fury.
Patrick "Pato" Hebert is an intermedia artist, educator and cultural worker based in Los Angeles and New York. His work explores the aesthetics, ethics and poetics of interconnectedness.Hebert was awarded a 2010 Mid-Career Fellowship for Visual Artists from the California Community Foundation. In 2008 he received the Excellence in Photographic Teaching Award from Center in Santa Fe, NM. His work has also been supported by the Rockefeller Foundation, the Creative Work Fund and the Durfee Foundation. He currently teaches as an Associate Arts Professor in the Art and Public Policy Department at Tisch School of the Arts, New York University.He also serves as the Senior Education Associate with the Global Forum on MSM & HIV, helping to develop innovative approaches to HIV prevention and advocacy.
Tamara Oyola-Santiago is a public health educator and activist who specializes in harm reduction. She graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles, with an MA (Latin American Studies) and an MPH (Community Health Sciences). After graduate school, Tamara joined the National Institutes of Health (NIH) as a Presidential Management Fellow. Tamara has worked with community-based organizations such as Iniciativa Comunitaria and Casa de Ayuda Intermedia al Menesteroso (CAIM) in Puerto Rico, and CitiWide Harm Reduction and Housing Works in NYC. In 2008, Tamara was named in the Women Rule! Oprah-White House Leadership Project. Currently, Tamara is a Health Educator at The New School where she mobilizes health promotion grounded in social justice and empowerment education for and with students.
John Weir is the author of two novels, The Irreversible Decline of Eddie Socket and What I Did Wrong. His writing has appeared in several anthologies, including Between Men: Original Fiction by Today's Best Gay Writers, and Vital Signs: Essential AIDS Fiction. His non-fiction has appeared in Details, Spin, and Rolling Stone. He is a professor in creative writing and literary translation at Queens Collage.
Art, AIDS and Representation—Public Conversations, Visual AIDS
Over the last year, Visual AIDS has convened a series of public conversations about the ways in which the ongoing epidemic of HIV/AIDS has been, and has not been represented in the public sphere through culture. The first event was entitled, (re)Presenting AIDS: Culture and Accountability with the Pop Up Museum of Queer History at the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies at CLAGS. Download the transcript here. The second event, What You Don't Know Could Fill A Museum, was part of First Saturday at the Brooklyn Museum, with the transcript to come. Subscribe the Visual AIDS Newsletter for upcoming Art, AIDS and Representation events.
Poster/VIRUS, AIDS Action Now
Poster/VIRUS is a project of the Canadian activist organization, AIDS Action Now. The posters are developed collectively with artists and activists working to respond to HIV. Plastered across urban streets and shared on the web, poster/VIRUS is a public art campaign with the aim of creating critical and contemporary discussion around HIV/AIDS.
Why We Fight: Remembering AIDS ACTIVISM, New York Public Library
Historically, the national and international response to the HIV epidemic lagged behind the passionate work of dedicated individuals who tended the sick, challenged prejudices against people living with HIV, educated their communities, and fought for resources and research. Acknowledging the crucial work of all AIDS activists, Why We Fight focuses on the contributions of those whose work was undertaken in New York City, which was an early epicenter for both the recognition of the disease and the grassroots response to the epidemic. The New York Public Library is a major repository for this history, preserving the archives of key organizations and individuals that have been pivotal in the response to AIDS.Now through April 6, Stephen A. Schwarzman Building