Floor to ceiling portrait of David Wojnarowicz, drawn directly on gallery wall, over map. With desk containing books with his writing and artwork.
Chalkboard drawing of David Wojnarowicz, from a beautiful photo by Peter Hujar, his lover. Writing on board encourages "students" to visit a concurrent show at Matthew Marks gallery of Hujar's work.
Keith Haring Mural. In the far corner are Images and portraits based on Felix Gonzalez Torres and Robert Blanchon's work.
Derek Jarman Portrait, next to David Wojnarowicz portraits at entry.
Installation was done in a gallery on the campus of Pratt Institute, so I created a classroom/study space where the public and I could learn from the artists and their writing and monographs, placed on desks in front of their portraits.
Drawing directly on gallery walls comments on the institution and maintins temporality. The work itself is temporary and short lived, as was the lives of these artists.
Keith Haring. An all time favorite of mine whose work and personality continue to inspire and challenge me. Here he dons a t-shirt made for his Pop Shop.
Robert Mapplethorpe is still an artist with whom I have a complex relationship. He is a major influence and an Icon of the Arts and Gay communities. His work and life challenges and inspires.
I was present in the space during gallery hours, researching and preparing for a final performance, acting as teacher and student in the space with those who came to discuss and contribute to the work.
I drew and developed the work during the course of the installation, so drawing becomes a performative act. The imagery changes subtly throughout the show to encourage revisiting the work.
At the closing reception I chose quotes from the artists' writing to be read by the poet Stephen Potter, as I interacted with each artist's portrait I had drawn on the walls.
Closing Reception Performance. Erasing the portraits I had created, to share with each attending viewer an experience of loss.
I did not wish to tell viewers about my own sense of loss or be sentimental in telling one how to feel. So I created an experience of loss through erasure of the work.
Drawing during the Closing Performance.
Before and after final performance. Clocks reference Felix Gonzalez Torres' poignant work. In this piece one is stopped while the other runs with implications of continuing after a lover's death. Reagan was blotted out without the care and love I gave the other portraits, as his response to the AIDS crisis was irresponsible, to say the least.
Drawing and erasing as part of the final performance in the gallery space. Saying goodbye to the work and the experience and sharing the literature and art I love. Drawing before erasure included: KS lesions on Haring's skin, a wheelchair for Mapplethorpe, blotting out the vision of Jarman, removing the voice of Wojnarowicz (who coined the silence=death slogan.)
Classroom and school references with graphite on gallery walls to welcome visitors, to encourage participation and obtain feedback.
An impetus for obtaining a Masters was to be able to teach at the college level. I am somewhat intellectual and enjoy school, reading and writing. My work incorporates my reading and studies to integrate my whole personality.
An apple for teacher, fruit (a common term for gay people,) a symbol of knowledge as old as the Adam and Eve story that also links sex with death and knowledge with punishment. A poisoned apple? Another part of the installation that invited participation and changed daily as people ate the fruit, (also a nod to Felix Gonzalez Torres.)
After the performance I change from blue collar back to Teacher, always carrying the "marks" of the artist into every endeavor I undertake.
Preparing the fruit of my investigation to share with the people who attended the exhibition.
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