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The Legacy of David Wojnarowicz | Cynthia Carr, Adam Putnam, Gary Schneider | Art and Literature Series Event


FREE - Auditorium doors open at 5:30 p.m.

In conjunction with the twentieth-anniversary edition of Brush Fires in the Social Landscape, Aperture Foundation and the New York Public Library present a conversation on David Wojnarowicz’s artistic legacy. The artist’s use of photography, at times in conjunction with text and painting, was extraordinary, as was his unprecedented way of addressing the AIDS crisis and issues of censorship, homophobia, and narrative. The contributors to the book Cynthia Carr and Gary Schneider who printed for David Wojnarowicz, discuss Schneider’s working relationship with Wojnarowicz and  the community of artists in which Wojnarowicz worked, and offer an overview of his significance then and now. Artist Adam Putnam discusses the ways in which Wojnarowicz has influenced his own work, followed by a conversation.

Author Lynne Tillman was oringinally scheduled to moderate this event and because of scheulde conflicts was not able to participate. 

Brush Fires in the Social Landscape coverAperture Foundation presents an expanded and redesigned edition of Brush Fires in the Social Landscape the only book that features the breadth of David Wojnarowicz’s work with photography. The new edition of this seminal publication puts the work in front of an audience all over again while maintaining the integrity of the first publication. It now addresses Wojnarowicz’s profound legacy: the relentless tugs, allegiances, censorship, and ethical issues, alongside his aesthetic brilliance, courage, and influence. Original contributors—from artist and writer friends such as Karen Finley, Nan Goldin, Kiki Smith, Vince Aletti, Cynthia Carr, and Lucy R. Lippard, to David Cole, the lawyer who represented him in his case against Donald Wildmon and the American Family Association—together with new ones, offer a compelling, provocative understanding of the artist and his work.

Copies of the book published by Aperture are available for purchase and signing at the end of the event.

Cynthia Carr is the author of three books, most recently Fire in the Belly: The Life and Times of David Wojnarowicz (2012), winner of a Lambda Literary Award for “Gay Memoir/Biography,” and finalist for the J. Anthony Lukas Prize. Her previous books are Our Town: A Heartland Lynching, a Haunted Town, and the Hidden History of White America (2006) and On Edge: Performance at the End of the Twentieth Century (1993/revised second edition in 2008). Carr chronicled the work of the contemporary artists as a Village Voice writer (with the byline C. Carr) in the 1980s and 90s, publishing numerous articles on such figures as Marina Abramovic, Karen Finley, and Guillermo Gomez-Pena. Her work has also appeared in Artforum, the New York Times, Modern Painters, TDR: The Drama Review, and other publications. She was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2007.

Adam Putnam was born and lives in New York City. He is artist with a multifaceted practice who has, for many years, explored the boundary between performance and architecture. His work has been included in various exhibitions worldwide including the 2008 Whitney Biennial, the 2nd Moscow Biennial, the Busan Biennial, Art Statements, P.S. 1 and The Astrup Fearnley Museum. Curatorial projects have included an exhibition of Martin Wong entitled Everything Must Go at P.P.O.W. and Blow Both of Us at Participant Inc. He is currently represented by P.P.O.W. gallery in NYC.

Gary Schneider was born in South Africa and lives and works in New York City. He has an MFA from Pratt Institute and is on the faculty of the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University. He has had solo exhibitions at venues including Artists Space, New York; Musée de L’Elysée, Lausanne, Switzerland; International Center of Photography, New York; Contemporary Museum, Honolulu; Sackler Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts; Museum of Photographic Arts, San Diego; and Reykjavik Art Museum, Iceland. Aperture has published two books of Schneider’s work Nudes (2005) and HandBook (2010). He was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2013.

Conceived and organized by Arezoo Moseni, and in its fifth year, Art and Literature Series events bring forth pollinations across the literary and visual arts with readings and discussions by acclaimed artists, authors and poets.

Events at The New York Public Library may be photographed or recorded. By attending these events, you consent to the use of your image and voice by the Library for all purposes.