America Is Hard to See

Solo en Inglès

This audio guide highlights selected works by artists in America Is Hard to See. Curators, scholars, and artists provide additional commentary.

531David Wojnarowicz, Untitled, 1989


David Wojnarowicz (1954–1992). _Untitled_, 1989. Three gelatin silver prints, Sheet: (each): 30 l/2 x 24 ¾ in. ( 77.5 x 62.9 cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; purchase, with funds from the Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation and the Photography Committee 2007.122a © Courtesy of The Estate of David Wojnarowicz and P.P.O.W. Gallery, New York

My name is Cynthia Carr. I wrote a biography of David Wojnarowicz called Fire in the Belly.

David did not really identify as a visual artist. He was a writer. And then when he met Peter Hujar, it was Hujar who said, “you have to become a visual artist.” Peter truly was a great photographer, specializing in portraits. He and David were lovers for maybe a month, but they began to form a different kind of relationship, where they were like family to each other. They were like kindred souls. By, I’d say, ’87, the AIDS crisis was starting to get worse and worse. Peter died on Thanksgiving of that year. And David was with him. Moments after Peter died, he took pictures of his face, and his hands, his feet. You see his love for Peter. That’s Peter’s foot. It’s important. And he’s going to record it, because Peter’s going to disappear now.