Thursday, December 18, 2008

Guest Post: Nathanial Siegel's 2,117 Days of Silence

First up with a guest post is Nathanal Siegel - writer, poet, AIDS activist. Currently Nathanial has an installation at the Leslie Lohman Art Gallery entitled "2, 117 Days of Silence." Go ahead and check it out. The exhibit runs through this Saturday.

From Nathanial:

November 19 - December 20, 2008
2,117 Days of Silence An Installation by Nathaniel Siegel Leslie/Lohman Gay Art Foundation
26 Wooster Street
New York, NY 10013
Phone 1 212 -431-2609

The artist Nathaniel Siegel has created an installation at the Leslie/Lohman Gallery: “2,117 days of silence: a visual presentation.”

To mark the 20th anniversary of ACT-UP New York City, the artist has gathered documentary evidence of the first mention of AIDS in the New York Times (July 3, 1981) “RARE CANCER SEEN IN 41 HOMOSEXUALS” by Lawrence K. Altman; And a transcript of President Ronald Reagan’s first public statement of the word “AIDS” on April 1, 1987 at a Luncheon for Members of the College of Physicians in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Reagan’s inaction inspired the original poster of SILENCE = DEATH in 1986. A copy of that original poster is also on view.

Using calendars of the years 1981 to 1989, the artist visually presents those days of silence. The calendar’s presented are from the artist’s collection and are representative of images that would be available to gay men in the ‘80’s.

ACT-UP New York city notes on their website that in 1987 the year Reagan first said AIDS: 41,027 persons are dead and 71,176 persons diagnosed with AIDS in the U.S.

Today, in New York City, there is no public school education of ways to prevent the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases including the proper use of condom’s and their effectiveness in preventing the spread of HIV and AIDS. Today, the current administration’s abstinence programs regarding discussions of sexual activity among teenagers and young adults amounts to the same SILENCE=DEATH scenario for our Lesbian Gay Bisexual Trans-gendered and Straight Youth: 27 years after we first learned about AIDS and effective ways to prevent infection with the proper use of condoms.

The Leslie/Lohman Gay Art Foundation is located at 26 Wooster Street between Canal and Grand Streets in SOHO New York. Gallery Hours: (for the balance of the show)
Wed. Dec 17th 12noon to 6pm
Thurs. Dec 18th 12noon to 6pm.
Fri. Dec 19th 12noon to 6pm.
Sat. Dec 20th 12noon to 6pm.


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