32 YEARS AND COUNTING: New Exhibit Highlights in the Early Years of HIV/AIDS in New York City

Images provided by The New-York Historical Society

The early history of the AIDS epidemic in New York City—from the first rumors in 1981 of a “gay plague” through the ensuing period of intense activism (ACT-UP), clinical research, and political struggle—will be the subject of a major new exhibition at the New-York Historical Society (170 Central Park West, New York, NY 10024), AIDS in New York: The First Five Years, on view from June 7 through September 15, 2013.

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At the beginning of the 1980s, various reports began to emerge in California and New York of a small number of men who had been diagnosed with rare forms of cancer and/or pneumonia. The cancer, Kaposi’s Sarcoma, normally only affected elderly men of Mediterranean or Jewish heritage and young adult African men. The pneumonia, Pneumocystis Pneumonia Carinii (PCP), is generally only found in individuals with seriously compromised immune systems. However, the men were young and had previously been in relatively good health. The only other characteristic that connected them was that they were all gay.

It now seems clear (and has been proven) that HIV, the human immunodeficiency virus itself, has been around for decades, conceivably even for centuries. We may also never know when HIV first crossed over from its original animal hosts. But when one is thinking of “AIDS” — Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome — as a medical construct, a classification created by medical and public health authorities, it becomes easy to pinpoint the specific day on which AIDS first came into view: June 5, 1981.

On that day, of course, no one had ever heard of HIV or of AIDS (which was first known by several other names particularly GRID – Gay-Related Immune Deficiency). Previously, throughout the 1970s, small numbers of people had been dying from HIV-related causes, one at a time, here and there. But such deaths were rare enough and random enough for no real pattern to emerge. And so, it was not until mid-1981 that the epidemic first reached proportions large enough for it to be picked up by the public health monitoring and surveillance system.

Gay Protesters on Gay Pride  - July 1985, Manhattan, New York City, New York State, USA --- Protesters hold a red sign reading "Fighting for Our Lives" during a Gay Pride Day march along Manhattan's Fifth Avenue. --- Image by © Owen Franken/CORBIS

Gay Protesters on Gay Pride – July 1985, Manhattan, New York City, New York State, USA — Protesters hold a red sign reading “Fighting for Our Lives” during a Gay Pride Day march along Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue. — Image by © Owen Franken/CORBIS

It thus came to be that on June 5, 1981 the Center for Disease Control and Protection publication Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) included a nondescript article entitled simply “Pneumocystis Pneumonia — Los Angeles.” Based on cases from Drs. Michael Gottlieb and Joel Weisman, this is the so-called “Document Zero” of the AIDS epidemic, the one from which all others proceed.

In the period October 1980-May 1981, 5 young men, all active homosexuals, were treated for biopsy-confirmed Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP) at 3 different hospitals in Los Angeles,” began the article.

Pneumocystis pneumonia in the United States is almost exclusively limited to severely immunosuppressed patients,” continued the article, in the first signal of things to come. “The fact that these patients were all homosexuals suggests an association between some aspect of a homosexual lifestyle or disease acquired through sexual contact and Pneumocystis pneumonia in this population . . . . [raising] the possibility of a cellular-immune dysfunction related to a common exposure that predisposes individuals to opportunistic infections.”

The article then went on to recount the five case histories, which encapsulate an early history of the sudden, ferocious impact of AIDS. A “previously healthy 33-year old man” developed PCP and oral candidiasis, dying May 3, 1981. Another 30-year-old man was diagnosed with PCP after “a 5-month history of fever each day and of elevated liver function tests“; yet another had esophageal and oral candidiasis. And a 29-year-old man, who three years earlier had battled Hodgkin’s disease, died in March 1981. The last, at age 36, had cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection and a “4-month history of fever, dyspnea, and cough.”

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What might have been seen as an obscure, easily forgotten medical footnote became more troubling a month later when the July 3, 1981 issue of MMWR reported yet another trend: “During the past 30 months, Kaposi’s sarcoma (KS), an uncommonly reported malignancy in the United States, has been diagnosed in 26 homosexual men.” The article also indicated the diagnosis of 10 additional cases of pneumonia among gay men in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area. And so it noted, dryly, that “physicians should be alert for Kaposi’s sarcoma, PC pneumonia, and other opportunistic infections associated with immunosuppression in homosexual men.”

A group advocating AIDS research marches down Fifth Avenue during the 14th annual Lesbian and Gay Pride parade in New York, June 27, 1983. Mario Suriani/Associated Press

A group advocating AIDS research marches down Fifth Avenue during the 14th annual Lesbian and Gay Pride parade in New York, June 27, 1983. Mario Suriani/Associated Press

The issue burst into the forefront of the new when The New York TImes, on July 3, 1981, published the first report of the illness in an article entititled “RARE CANCER SEEN IN 41 HOMOSEXUALS“, written by Dr. Lawrence K. Altman, which opened with “Doctors in New York and California have diagnosed among homosexual men 41 cases of a rare and often rapidly fatal form of cancer. Eight of the victims died less than 24 months after the diagnosis was made.” Buried on the inside of the first section of The Times on page A20, the article none the same, was the shot heard around the world and the opening of what has become one of the more storied medical fights in the annals of medical history. Continue reading

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Parcours at Art Basel 2013 Presents An Array of Site-Specific Artworks Installed Across the Klingental Neighborhood of Basel

For its fourth year, the 2013 edition of Art Basel Parcours has moved into the Klingental  neighborhood of Basel, one of the city’s most culturally diverse and creatively  active quarters. The Kaserne Basel (www.kaserne-basel.ch) is a thriving urban arts center and a lively social meeting point, located just a few steps from the river Rhine; and it brings cutting-edge concerts from Rock and Indie to Pop and Soul as well as national and international contemporary theater and dance performances to the heart of Basel.

Presenting 17 high-caliber works by renowned international artists – Marina Abramović, Marc Bauer, Olaf Breuning, Tom Burr, Michael Craig-Martin, Lothar Hempel, Joep van Liefland, Jill Magid, Lisa Oppenheim, Evariste Richer, Sterling Ruby, Michael Smith & Joshua White, Valerie Snobeck, Daniel Steegmann Mangrané, Danh Vo, Martin Walde and Artur Żmijewski – Parcours will engage with Basel’s past and present, weaving artistic interventions into the fabric of different locations across the neighbourhood. Parcours, an official sector of Art Basel, is for the first time curated by Florence Derieux, Director of FRAC Champagne-Ardenne. The sector will open to the public on Wednesday with a night of special performances by L.A Dance Project, Marc Bauer and Michael Smith.

At FRAC Champagne-Ardenne, Miss Derieux conceives and produces exhibitions of contemporary art, and organizes educational activities and events to engage the public in contemporary art. She has curated independent projects worldwide and has authored several books, essays and articles on the subject of contemporary art and artists. She lectures frequently at art institutions around the world.

Centering around Kaserne Basel, highlights of Parcours will include a restaging of Marina Abramović’s ‘The Airport’ (1972), a historical sound environment originally realized at the Student Culture Centre in Belgrade, in which the artist announced intermittent flight departure times, presented by Lisson Gallery. Bortolami Gallery will present ‘Dressage’ (2013), a new in-situ installation by Tom Burr, consisting of dark wooden and metal structures that present literal and abstract re-workings of equestrian fences, stalls, jumps, paddocks, referring to the vocabulary of sculpture while echoing the former military purpose of the site. New Art Centre and Gagosian Gallery will show ‘Hammer (blue)’ (2011) by Michael Craig-Martin. Applying a similar technique to his sculptures as to his two-dimensional work, Craig-Martin’s objects have sculptural form but at the same time look like drawings against the sky.

Hauser & Wirth present a large-scale and fullyfunctioning wood-burning stove by Sterling Ruby and, which once lit will be operating 24 hours a day during the run of Parcours. Klosterfelde will show Lisa Oppenheim’s ‘Smoke’ (2013), a new work including several video projections expanding on her technique of using the light of a match to expose a negative image of smoke. Lothar Hempel, presented by Anton Kern Gallery and Stuart Shave/Modern Art, will present a new installation in the form of a market place, where fragments of history and other forms of reality are for sale. Meessen De Clercq will show ‘Avalanche (#2)’ (2012) by Evariste Richer, consisting of 60,000 dice. Forming an enlarged and pixelated image of an avalanche, the work addresses, through the use of the dice, the contiguous relationship between an arbitrary game and the unpredictable course of a natural phenomenon.

The opening Parcours Night, taking place on Wednesday, June 12, will feature a special  program of performances, curated by Derieux, in addition to late openings of all Parcours sites. Presented by Art Basel in collaboration with Kaserne Basel, L.A Dance Project will perform Merce Cunningham’s ‘Winterbranch’ (1964), an early piece Cunningham created together with Robert Rauschenberg (concept, costumes, lighting design, accessories) and La Monte Young (music); and ‘Moving Parts’ (2012), a collaboration between dancer and choreographer Benjamin Millepied and artist Christopher Wool.

L.A Dance Project is an artist collective founded by renowned choreographer and dancer Benjamin Millepied, along with composer Nico Muhly, art consultant Matthieu Humery, producer Charles Fabius and film producer Dimitri Chamblas. L.A Dance Project’s goal is to create new work and to revive seminal collaborations from influential dance makers. New works by the company consists of multidisciplinary collaborations with various artists: visual artists, musicians, designers, directors and composers. L.A Dance Project also promotes the work of emerging and established creators, contributing to new platforms for contemporary dance. Continue reading

Coming Soon: Kick-Ass 2 to be Released August 16, 2013

If you mess with one member of Justice Forever, you mess with them all!!

The blade-wielding Hit Girl (CHLOË GRACE MORETZ) returns for the follow-up to 2010’s irreverent global hit: ”Kick-Ass 2”.

The blade-wielding Hit Girl (CHLOË GRACE MORETZ) returns for the follow-up to 2010’s irreverent global hit: ”Kick-Ass 2”.

 

Hit Girl (CHLOË GRACE MORETZ) whips Kick-Ass (AARON TAYLOR-JOHNSON) into shape in the follow-up to 2010’s irreverent global hit: ”Kick-Ass 2”.

Hit Girl (CHLOË GRACE MORETZ) whips Kick-Ass (AARON TAYLOR-JOHNSON) into shape in the follow-up to 2010’s irreverent global hit: ”Kick-Ass 2”.

The action-comedy, starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Chloë Grace Moretz, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Morris Chestnut, John Leguizamo, Donald Faison and Jim Carrey, and written and directed by Jeff Wadlow, returns this summer as one of the most anticipated feature tent-pole films of Summer 2013

L to R) Colonel Stars and Stripes (JIM CARREY) makes a plan with Kick-Ass (AARON TAYLOR-JOHNSON) in the follow-up to 2010’s irreverent global hit: ”Kick-Ass 2”.

L to R) Colonel Stars and Stripes (JIM CARREY) makes a plan with Kick-Ass (AARON TAYLOR-JOHNSON) in the follow-up to 2010’s irreverent global hit: ”Kick-Ass 2”.

Based on the comic book written by Mark Millar & John S. Romita Jr., and produced by Matthew Vaughn, Tarquin Pack, Adam Bohling, David Reid, and Brad Pitt, Kick-Ass, Hit Girl and Red Mist return for the follow-up to 2010’s irreverent global hit in Kick-Ass 2.

I am not a big fan of comic book movies but Kick-Ass, by virtue of its unique pedigree, had me at “hello”. When we last saw junior assassin Hit Girl and young vigilante Kick-Ass, they were trying to live as normal teenagers Mindy and Dave. With graduation looming and uncertain what to do, Dave decides to start the world’s first superhero team with Mindy. Unfortunately, when Mindy is busted for sneaking out as Hit Girl, she’s forced to retire—leaving her to navigate the terrifying world of high-school mean girls on her own. With no one left to turn to, Dave joins forces with Justice Forever, run by a born-again ex-mobster named Colonel Stars and Stripes.

(L to R) Kick-Ass (AARON TAYLOR-JOHNSON) faces off against his nemesis, The Mother F%&*^r (CHRISTOPHER MINTZ-PLASSE), in the follow-up to 2010’s irreverent global hit: ”Kick-Ass 2”.

(L to R) Kick-Ass (AARON TAYLOR-JOHNSON) faces off against his nemesis, The Mother F%&*^r (CHRISTOPHER MINTZ-PLASSE), in the follow-up to 2010’s irreverent global hit: ”Kick-Ass 2”.

Just as they start to make a real difference on the streets, the world’s first super villain, The Mother F%&*^r, assembles his own evil league and puts a plan in motion to make Kick-Ass and Hit Girl pay for what they did to his dad– with only the blade-wielding Hit Girl (Chloë Grace Moretz) can prevent their annihilation. If that’s not worth looking forward to, then what is?

. http://www.kickass-themovie.com

“Best of Archive” opens at the Getty Images Gallery (London)

Exclusive Exhibition (Now Through 1st June 2013) From The World’s Largest Commercial Photography Archive

The entrance to the Carlton Hotel, Cannes, France, 1958. (Photo by Slim Aarons/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

The entrance to the Carlton Hotel, Cannes, France, 1958. (Photo by Slim Aarons/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

British pop singer David Bowie in concert at Earl's Court, London during his 1978 world tour.   (Photo by Evening Standard/Getty Images)

British pop singer David Bowie in concert at Earl’s Court, London during his 1978 world tour. (Photo by Evening Standard/Getty Image)

Getty Images Gallery announces the launch of its latest exhibition celebrating a selection of unique and iconic imagery from the Getty Images Archive, the world’s largest commercial photography archive comprising of a collection of over 90 million images. The Getty Images Gallery is situated in central London, just a stone’s throw away from Oxford Circus. Opening hours are Monday to Friday 10am-5.30pm and Saturday 12pm-5.30pm.

A woman walking past a line of advertising posters in Hiroshima, July 1955. Original Publication: Picture Post - 7849 - Hiroshima - pub. 1955  (Photo by John Chillingworth/Picture Post/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

A woman walking past a line of advertising posters in Hiroshima, July 1955. Original Publication: Picture Post – 7849 – Hiroshima – pub. 1955 (Photo by John Chillingworth/Picture Post/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Marine chaplain Eli Tavesian giving communion to marine Louis A Loya, at Forward Command Post in Hue, Vietnam.    (Photo by Express Newspapers/Getty Images)

Marine chaplain Eli Tavesian giving communion to marine Louis A Loya, at Forward Command Post in Hue, Vietnam. (Photo by Express Newspapers/Getty Images)

The exhibition, Best of Archive, offers a glimpse into a historical and extremely valuable treasure trove of imagery, including vintage prints dating from the late 19th century. With over 90 million images, of which just 0.1 per cent are digitized, Best of Archive brings this magnificent collection alive and in front of Londoners. Best of Archive runs through to Saturday 1 June and admission is free. Continue reading

KATE MOSS IS DEBUTS AS NEW FACE AND BODY OF THE ST. TROPEZ TAN

“The Ultimate Icon Wearing The Ultimate Tan”

St.Tropez, the iconic and leading global self-tan brand recently announced the appointment of Kate Moss as the new face and body of the brand, bringing the world’s most famous fashion and beauty icon’s unique edge and personality to the brand’s first-ever global advertising campaign. Of her new signing, Miss Moss said: “I’m so excited to be working with St.Tropez. I’ve been using the products since they started and it’s a really trustworthy, cool brand. I always feel more confident with a St.Tropez tan!”

Kate Moss  white swim suit lying down low-res_Fotor

Michelle Feeney, CEO of PZ Cussons Beauty, owners of St.Tropez, said: “We’re absolutely thrilled that Kate Moss has chosen to work with us on our new campaign: it gives us the ultimate stamp of approval on the quality of our products. Kate epitomises St.Tropez’s naturally glamorous approach to self-tanning and is a long-time advocate of the brand.”

Kate Moss  nude landscape low-res_Fotor

And he adds: “As a global beauty brand with a heritage in tanning, St.Tropez is now in 18 countries and women from Rio to L.A are seeking the benefits of safe tanning. Kate’s fashion icon status is important to us but now her growing number of beauty campaigns proves that her appeal as a beauty icon resonates with confident women across all age groups globally. Not only is she beautiful but she has this amazing attitude. St.Tropez is about confidence.” Continue reading

Barneys New York Launches Roy Lichtenstein Limited Edition Collection In Collaboration With Art Production Fund

Barneys New York, the luxury specialty retailer, has partnered with the estate of Roy Lichtenstein and Art Production Fund to launch a limited-edition collection of home goods, available exclusively this summer at Barneys New York.

Lichtenstein Dish Set, Dishes, 1966.  (PRNewsFoto/Barneys New York)

Lichtenstein Dish Set, Dishes, 1966. (PRNewsFoto/Barneys New York)

The summer-themed collection includes trays, placemats, china dishes, glasses, paper plates, paper cups, pillows, flying discs, pool floats, water bottles, and beach accessories, including bags, towels, and beach balls covered in Lichtenstein’s iconic Pop Art images of the ’60s, ’70s, and beyond.  Lichtenstein original artwork utilized for this special collaboration includes Ice Cream Soda (1962), Drawing for Kiss IV (1963), Baked Potato (1962), Bananas and Grapefruit I (1972), and much more.

Roy Lichtenstein (born in New York City, 1923) was one of the leading figures of the Pop Art movement. Depicting American pop culture and mass media with a sense of irony, his distinct style has made him an icon of the 20th century and his artwork has been celebrated in numerous retrospectives worldwide. Lichtenstein found inspiration in popular advertising and the comic book aesthetic, and his artwork is recognized globally today. During the 1960s, Lichtenstein exhibited at the Leo Castelli Gallery in New York alongside Jasper Johns, James Rosenquist, and Andy Warhol. Lichtenstein continued creating works until his death in 1997. 

Lichtenstein Beach Bag, Kiss IV, 1962.  (PRNewsFoto/Barneys New York)

Lichtenstein Beach Bag, Kiss IV, 1962. (PRNewsFoto/Barneys New York)

BARNEYS NEW YORK (Barneys) is renowned for having the most discerning edit from the world’s top designers, including women’s and men’s ready-to-wear, accessories, shoes, jewelry, cosmetics, fragrances, and gifts for the home. Barneys’ signature sense of wit and style is manifested in its creative advertising campaigns, original holiday themes, and celebrated window displays. Founded as a men’s retailer in 1923 in downtown Manhattan, it became an international arbiter of high style for both women and men in the 1970s, renowned for discovering, developing, and celebrating new and innovative design talent. Today, Barneys New York operates flagship destinations in New York City, Beverly Hills, Chicago, Seattle, Boston, San Francisco, Las Vegas, and Scottsdale, along with a preeminent luxury online store, www.Barneys.com, and 25 other stores across the United States. Continue reading

LEGO® Comes to New York City’s Times Square

THE ART OF THE BRICK® is coming to New York’s Times Square!

Reknown contemporary artist Nathan Sawaya continues to take LEGO® where it has never gone before by presenting the largest display of LEGO® art ever assembled, set to unveil at Discovery Times Square on June 14th with brand-new, never-before-seen masterpieces, doubling the size of the show CNN claims is one of the “must see exhibitions” in the world. THE ART OF THE BRICK®, a captivating exhibition of intriguing works of art made exclusively from one of the most recognizable toys in the world, LEGO®, is set to make its debut in New York City at Discovery Times Square (226 West 44th Street), with tickets now on sale. THE ART OF THE BRICK® at Discovery Times Square runs until January 5, 2014.

"Yellow" by Nathan Sawaya.  (PRNewsFoto/Discovery Times Square)

“Yellow” by Nathan Sawaya. (PRNewsFoto/Discovery Times Square)

The critically acclaimed collection of creative and inspiring art constructed using only LEGO® toy bricks by Sawaya is coming to New York after enjoying record-breaking runs to sold-out crowds in Singapore, Taiwan and Australia. The Discovery Times Square collection will be the world’s biggest and most elaborate display of LEGO® art ever. Sawaya will be creating brand-new, never-before-seen works exclusively for this New York City premiere with more than 100 works of art made out of millions and millions of little LEGO® bricks.

Nathan Sawaya is an acclaimed New York-based artist who creates awe-inspiring artwork out of what is essentially a simple toy, focusing on creating large-scale sculptures using only LEGO® bricks and was the first artist to ever take LEGO® into the art world. His touring exhibition – THE ART OF THE BRICK® – has entertained and inspired millions of art lovers and enthusiasts from Australia, Taiwan, Singapore, China and around the world. Originally from Oregon, Sawaya’s childhood dreams were always fun and creative. He drew cartoons, wrote stories, perfected magic tricks and of course also played with LEGO®. His days were filled with imagination. When it came time for college, Sawaya moved to New York City, attended NYU and became a lawyer. But after years of million dollar mergers and corporate acquisitions on Park Avenue, Sawaya realized he would rather be sitting on the floor creating art, than sitting in a board room negotiating contracts. He walked away from the law and took an artistic risk on LEGO®. Now Sawaya is an author, speaker and one of the most popular, award-winning contemporary artists of our time. Continue reading