David Wojnarowicz Retrospective At The Whitney Explores The Enduring Resonance Of An Artist Who Merged The Personal And The Political

This summer, the most complete presentation to date of the work of artist, writer, and activist David Wojnarowicz will be on view in a full-scale retrospective organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art. David Wojnarowicz: History Keeps Me Awake at Night is the first major re-evaluation since 1999 of one of the most fervent and essential voices of his generation.

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David Wojnarowicz with Tom Warren, Self-Portrait of David Wojnarowicz, 1983–84. Acrylic and collaged paper on gelatin silver print, 60 × 40 in. (152.4 × 101.6 cm). Collection of Brooke Garber Neidich and Daniel Neidich, Photograph by Ron Amstutz. (The exhibition is organized by David Breslin, DeMartini Family Curator and Director of the Collection, and David Kiehl, Curator Emeritus, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.)

Opening at the Whitney on July 13 and running through September 30, David Wojnarowicz: History Keeps Me Awake at Night features more than a hundred works by the artist and is organized by two Whitney curators, David Breslin, DeMartini Family Curator and Director of the Collection, and David Kiehl, Curator Emeritus. The exhibition, which will be installed in the Museum’s fifth floor Neil Bluhm Family Galleries through September 30, draws upon the scholarly resources of the Fales Library and Special Collections (NYU), the repository of Wojnarowicz’s archive, and is also built on the foundation of the Whitney’s extensive holdings of Wojnarowicz’s work, including thirty works from the Museum’s collection. It will travel to the Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid, in May 2019, and to Mudam Luxembourg – Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean, Luxembourg City, in November 2019.

Scott Rothkopf, Deputy Director for Programs and Nancy and Steve Crown Family Chief Curator, remarked, “Since his death more than twenty-five years ago, David Wojnarowicz has become an almost mythic figure, haunting, inspiring, and calling to arms subsequent generations through his inseparable artistic and political examples. This retrospective will enable so many to confront for the first time, or anew, the groundbreaking multidisciplinary body of work on which his legacy actually stands.”

Beginning in the late 1970s, David Wojnarowicz (1954–1992) created a body of work that spanned photography, painting, music, film, sculpture, writing, performance, and activism. Joining a lineage of iconoclasts, Wojnarowicz (pronounced Voyna-ROW-vich) saw the outsider as his true subject. His mature period began with a series of photographs and collages that honored—and placed himself among—consummate countercultural figures like Arthur Rimbaud, William Burroughs, and Jean Genet. Even as he became well-known in the East Village art scene for his mythological paintings, Wojnarowicz remained committed to writing personal essays. Queer and HIV-positive, Wojnarowicz became an impassioned advocate for people with AIDS at a time when an inconceivable number of friends, lovers, and strangers—disproportionately gay men—were dying from the disease and from government inaction.

After hitchhiking across the U.S. and living for several months in San Francisco, and then in Paris, David Wojnarowicz settled in New York in 1978 and soon after began to exhibit his work in East Village galleries. Largely self-taught, Wojnarowicz came to prominence in New York in the 1980s, a period marked by great creative energy and profound cultural changes. Intersecting movements—graffiti, new and no wave music, conceptual photography, performance, neo-expressionist painting—made New York a laboratory for innovation. Unlike many artists, Wojnarowicz refused a signature style, adopting a wide variety of techniques with an attitude of radical possibility. Distrustful of inherited structures, a feeling amplified by the resurgence of conservative politics, Wojnarowicz varied his repertoire to better infiltrate the culture.

His essay for the catalog accompanying the exhibition Witnesses: Against Our Vanishing (curated by Nan Goldin at Artists Space in 1989–90) came under fire for its vitriolic attack on politicians and leaders who were preventing AIDS treatment and awareness. The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) threatened to defund the exhibition, and Wojnarowicz fought against this and for the first amendment rights of artists. Continue reading

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“Beyond I Do” Campaign Launches to Raise Awareness about the Prevalence of Discrimination Against LGBT People in the United States

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Campaign highlights that Americans are being denied housing, losing their jobs, and being refused services because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender

A recently-launched campaign aims to raise awareness about the prevalence of discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people in the United States, despite the widespread misconception they have basic protections.

The public service campaign from the Ad Council, in partnership with the Gill Foundation, promotes acceptance, empathy, and understanding for the millions of LGBT Americans who can be kicked out of their homes, fired from their jobs or denied services because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Created by ad agency CP+B with research and strategy from Redscout, the “Beyond I Do” campaign will confront the common misconception that LGBT Americans received full equality along with the right to marry.LGBTQ-Fired-Bus-17.5hX12w-Eng.indd

The campaign highlights many stories of Americans who have faced discrimination across the country, along with facts about discrimination, at BeyondIDo.org. They speak for the 55 percent of LGBT people who have reported being discriminated against due to their sexual orientation or gender identity.1 And while public opinion research shows 79 percent of non-LGBT Americans support equality for LGBT people, 80 percent mistakenly believe it’s illegal under federal law to fire, evict or refuse service to someone because they are LGBT.2 3 In reality, 31 states lack comprehensive protections and allow these acts of discrimination against LGBT Americans.4

Everyone should have the ability to live in safety, support their families, and go about their daily lives without the fear of being turned away because they’re gay or transgender,” said Lisa Sherman, Ad Council President, and CEO. “By sharing powerful and poignant stories, this campaign highlights the values we hold so dear as Americans and provides a real opportunity to grow awareness and empathy.”BID-Rights-Print-7wX10h-Eng.indd

Beyond I Do” features stories of Americans from across the country who have been fired from their jobs, kicked out of their homes, or denied services because they are LGBT. They include: Continue reading

Celebrity Cruises to Offer Legal Same-Sex Marriages Onboard

The Historic First For The Brand Was Made Possible Following A Monumental Vote In The Fleet’s Country Of Registry

Celebrity Cruises is proud to announce that same-sex marriages performed onboard are now legally recognized, marking a historic first for the modern luxury brand.

Celebrity Cruises Logo

Celebrity Cruises Logo

The motion follows a transformative vote in Malta, where a majority of the Celebrity fleet is registered, which passed the country’s parliament 66-1. The long-awaited referendum opens the door for Celebrity to legally recognize same-sex marriages performed onboard, and have the fleet’s captains officiate the ceremonies.

Celebrity Cruises has a long history of supporting the LGBTQ+ community, and I cannot think of a more important time in our history than right now to do all we can to support inclusion. I am absolutely thrilled to announce that starting today, we welcome same-sex couples to marry on our ships while in international waters,” said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, President and CEO, Celebrity Cruises. “This is one for the history books!

The Celebrity Weddings program offers onboard ceremonies and destination weddings for lovebirds. The Nautical Nuptials at Sea package includes a Captain-led ceremony, an event coordinator’s services, live music, one hour of photography, cake for two, bottle of Champagne, a bouquet and boutonniere, plus additional romantic turndown amenities post-ceremony.

Celebrity Weddings has already hosted many same-sex weddings in the U.S., Mexico, and the Caribbean, where legal,” said Barbara Whitehall, Managing Director, The Wedding Experience. “We are ecstatic that this new Malta ruling opens up marriage equality for anyone and everyone sailing with Celebrity Cruises while in international waters.

To learn more about the Celebrity Weddings program and The Wedding Experience, visit www.celebrityweddings.eweddingcalendar.com.

Los Angeles LGBT Center Expands Services for Homeless LGBTQ Youth With Support From S. Mark Taper Foundation

This week the Los Angeles LGBT Center announces it has received a $100,000 grant from the S. Mark Taper Foundation to support The Center‘s Homeless Youth Services. The S. Mark Taper Foundation, founded in 1989, is a private family foundation dedicated to enhancing the quality of people’s lives by supporting nonprofit organizations and their work in their respective communities.2b6088cc959028b4289c4dd619d45523

The grant will help fund holistic services including food, showers, emergency shelter, transitional housing, education, college access services, employment training, job placement assistance, addiction recovery and other health and wellness support.

On any given day or night, there are several thousand homeless youth ages 24 and younger living on the streets of Los Angeles. At its Youth Center, which is open seven days a week, the Center provides three meals per day; clothing; support group; a charter high school, GED, and college prep program; an employment preparation, training, and placement program; and more. The Center also offers a place to stay at its emergency shelter and longer-term housing at its transitional housing program.

In 2016 the Center served more than 74,000 meals at its Youth Center and provided more than 22,858 bed nights to homeless youth. Additionally, more than 109 homeless youth secured jobs through the Center’s Youth Employment Program.

With a staggering 40 percent of youth living on the streets in Hollywood identifying as LGBT, the Los Angeles LGBT Center will be able to expand its life-saving services to homeless youth because of the S. Mark Taper Foundation’s generosity,” said Center Director of Children, Youth & Family Services Simon Costello. “No organization offers a wider range of services for LGBT and questioning youth than the Los Angeles LGBT Center. We are honored to work with the S. Mark Taper Foundation to provide whatever support and services that youth need to get off the streets and become healthy, equal and complete members of society.

The Los Angeles LGBT Center does exceptional work in helping homeless youth find a better quality of life, and we are proud to help the Center continue its mission,” said S. Mark Taper Foundation Executive Director Adrienne Wittenberg. “Too many youths find themselves trying to survive on the streets of Los Angeles, but with our relationship with the Center, together we will transform and uplift the lives of these youth for the better.

Since 1969 the Los Angeles LGBT Center has cared for, championed and celebrated LGBT individuals and families in Los Angeles and beyond. Today the Center’s nearly 600 employees provide services for more LGBT people than any other organization in the world, offering programs, services, and global advocacy that span four broad categories: Health, Social Services and Housing, Culture and Education, Leadership and Advocacy. The Center is an unstoppable force in the fight against bigotry and the struggle to build a better world; the world in which LGBT people can be healthy, equal and complete members of society. Learn more at lalgbtcenter.org.

The Jewish Museum Announces New, Major Collection Exhibition to Open Fall 2017

The Jewish Museums long-running collection exhibition, Culture and Continuity: The Jewish Journey, originally mounted in 1993, recently close, making way for a major, new collection display, Scenes from the Collection, opening in Fall 2017. Culture and Continuity’s last day on view was Sunday, February 12, 2017.

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The Jewish Museum (New York) logo

The Jewish Museum‘s unparalleled collection spans 4,000 years of Jewish culture through nearly 30,000 objects, including painting, sculpture, photography, decorative arts, ceremonial objects, antiquities, works on paper, and media. Scenes from the Collection will transform the Museum’s third floor and feature over 650 works from antiquities to contemporary art – many of which will be on view for the first time at the Museum. The exhibition was designed by Tsao & McKown Architects.

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Hanukkah Lamp, Orivit-Aktiengesellschaft (1900-1905), Köln-Braunsfeld (Germany), 1900-05. White metal: cast and silver-plated; glass: mold formed, 13⅞ x 12¾ x 5 5/16 in. (35.3 x 32.4 x 13.5 cm). The Jewish Museum, New York, Gift of Dr. Harry G. Friedman (?), F 3573.

The new exhibition will be divided into eight different sections, or scenes, highlighting the diversity and depth of the collection. The new installation will present the collection as a reflection of the continual evolution that is the essence of Jewish identity, as well as a powerful expression of artistic and cultural creativity.

Scenes from the Collection will immerse our visitors in a dynamic and engaging experience. Developed collaboratively among the Museum’s curatorial staff, the new installation is a reflection of the Jewish Museum’s unique position as an art museum exploring Jewish culture and identity through a contemporary lens,” said Claudia Gould, Helen Goldsmith Menschel Director of the Jewish Museum.

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Torah Binder, Rabat (Morocco), 19th century. Cotton: embroidered with silk thread, 9 1/2 × 103 3/4 in. (24.1 × 263.5 cm). The Jewish Museum, New York, Gift of Sonia Cohen Azagury, 2004-64.

In addition, Scenes from the Collection will be flexible, with four scenes changing annually, and one changing every six months, so that different subjects can be examined while more of the collection is on view. The stories the works of art tell will illuminate multiple perspectives on being Jewish in the past and present, how Jewish culture intersects with art and the art world, and how it is part of the larger world of global interconnections.

The eight scenes are:

Origins

Scenes from the Collection will start from the beginning – the year 1904 when the Museum was founded with a gift of ceremonial objects from Judge Mayer Sulzberger. Central to this section will be the question of what, why, and how the Museum has collected and what this says about the changing identity of the institution, the Jewish community, and the art world.

Constellations

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Laurie Simmons (American, b. 1949), Woman Listening to Radio, 1978. Gelatin silver print, sheet: 7 15/16 × 9 15/16 in. (20.2 × 25.2 cm); image: 5 3/16 × 8 in. (13.2 × 20.3 cm). The Jewish Museum, New York, Purchase: Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation Fund, 2013-1. © Laurie Simmons, image courtesy of the artist and Salon 94, New York

In “Constellations,” over 50 of the most visually powerful and culturally significant works in the collection – from antiquities to the twenty-first century – will be exhibited as individual gems but with powerful thematic connections to one another. Such issues will be explored as transforming and transcending tradition, cultural distinctiveness and universality, and ever-changing notions of identity. Groups of works will relate to each other aesthetically or contextually, creating multiple conversations. For example, three works that can be seen as challenging tradition are Peter Blume’s Pig’s Feet and Vinegar (1927), Laurie SimmonsWoman Listening to Radio (1978), and Nicole Eisenman’s Seder (2011).

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Nicole Eisenman (American, b. France, 1965), Seder, 2010. Oil on canvas, 39 1/16 × 48 in. (99.2 × 121.9 cm). The Jewish Museum, New York, Purchase Lore Ross Bequest; Milton and Miriam Handler Endowment Fund; and Fine Arts Acquisitions Committee Fund, 2011-3 © Nicole Eisenman.

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The Los Angeles LGBT Center Receives $10,000 Grant From The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation in Partnership with Macy’s

The Los Angeles LGBT Center has been awarded a grant for $10,000 from The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) in partnership with Macy’s to fund an HIV prevention program tailored for LGBT youth. The grant will be used by the Center’s Sexual Health and Education Program, which provides cutting-edge HIV prevention care that includes rapid HIV antibody testing, ultra-sensitive PCR/DNA HIV testing, comprehensive Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) testing and STI treatment, post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP), pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), and more.

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The Los Angeles LGBT Center

The Center is honored to be recognized by ETAF for its unique work in the community. Since 1969 the Los Angeles LGBT Center has cared for, championed and celebrated LGBT individuals and families in Los Angeles and beyond. Today the Center’s nearly 600 employees provide services for more LGBT people than any other organization in the world, offering programs, services, and global advocacy that span four broad categories: Health, Social Services and Housing, Culture and Education, Leadership and Advocacy. The organization is an unstoppable force in the fight against bigotry and the struggle to build a better world; a world in which LGBT people can be healthy, equal and complete members of society.

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The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) logo

The late Dame Elizabeth Taylor established The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) in 1991 to support organizations delivering direct care and services to people living with HIV and AIDS, especially the most marginalized communities. Today, ETAF also provides grants for innovative HIV prevention education and advocacy programs to existing organizations around the world. With aagrd8rrkey domestic advocacy funding focuses on comprehensive sexual health education and HIV criminalization reform, ETAF continues to bring the marginalized to the center of attention and advocate for their rights. The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation has granted to more than 675 organizations in 44 countries and nearly all 50 states in the U.S.

The work that the Los Angeles LGBT Center does to help people affected by HIV/AIDS is impressive and very much aligned with Elizabeth Taylor’s passionate commitment to the cause,” said Joel Goldman, Managing Director of The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation. “ETAF and our partners at Macy’s are thrilled to present the Los Angeles LGBT Center with these funds to help further our shared mission.”macys-logo

Through their Cause Marketing Program, Macy’s recognizes their responsibility to the community and their concern for the needs of their neighbors. They are proud to partner with ETAF and have contributed to this grant.

JetBlue Remains at the Top for LGBT Workplace Equality

For Yet Another Year JetBlue Earns a Perfect ‘100’ From the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Annual Scorecard on LGBT Workplace Equality

JetBlue announced today that it has received another top score of 100 on the 2017 Corporate Equality Index (CEI). The honor from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation is based on surveys and reports on corporate policies and practices related to LGBT workplace equality.

The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer equality. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

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JetBlue and the New York City Gay Men’s Chorus teamed up for the 2016 NYC Pride March, celebrating with great music, impressive dance moves, and a 500-ticket giveaway (Photos courtesy: Blandon)

The CEI evaluates LGBT-related policies and practices including non-discrimination workplace protections, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive health care benefits, competency programs, and public engagement with the LGBT community. JetBlue’s efforts in satisfying all of the CEI’s criteria results in a 100 ranking and the designation as a Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality.jetblue-logo

JetBlue is thrilled to once again earn a top rating in HRC’s Corporate Equality Index,” said Robin Hayes, JetBlue’s President and CEO. “Here at JetBlue we are proud to embrace our company’s rich diversity and celebrate the LGBT crewmembers who have helped make us one of America’s best places to work.”jetblue-7697

JetBlue is New York’s Hometown Airline™, and a leading carrier in Boston, Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood, Los Angeles (Long Beach), Orlando, and San Juan. JetBlue carries more than 35 million customers a year to 100 cities in the U.S., Caribbean, and Latin America with an average of 925 daily flights.

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JetBlue and the New York City Gay Men’s Chorus teamed up for the 2016 NYC Pride March, celebrating with great music, impressive dance moves, and a 500-ticket giveaway (Photos courtesy: Blandon)

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