The AIDS Crisis Is Ridiculous and Other Writings, 1986--2003

The AIDS Crisis Is Ridiculous and Other Writings, 1986--2003

by Gregg Bordowitz
     
 

ISBN-10: 0262524597

ISBN-13: 9780262524599

Pub. Date: 04/01/2006

Publisher: MIT Press

The HIV epidemic animates this collection of essays by a noted artist,
writer, and activist. "So total was the burden of illness -- mine and others' --
that the only viable response, other than to cease making art entirely, was to adjust to the gravity of the predicament by using the crisis as a lens," writes
Gregg Bordowitz, a film- and video-maker

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Overview

The HIV epidemic animates this collection of essays by a noted artist,
writer, and activist. "So total was the burden of illness -- mine and others' --
that the only viable response, other than to cease making art entirely, was to adjust to the gravity of the predicament by using the crisis as a lens," writes
Gregg Bordowitz, a film- and video-maker whose best-known works, Fast Trip Long Drop
(1993) and Habit (2001), address AIDS globally and personally. In The AIDS
Crisis Is Ridiculous --
the title essay is inspired by Charles Ludlam,
founder of the Ridiculous Theater Company -- Bordowitz follows in the tradition of artist-writers Robert Smithson and Yvonne Rainer by making writing an integral part of an artistic practice.

Bordowitz has left his earliest writings for the most part unchanged -- to preserve, he says, "both the youthful exuberance and the palpable sense of fear" created by the early days of the AIDS crisis. After these early essays, the writing becomes more experimental, sometimes mixing fiction and fact; included here is a selection of Bordowitz's columns from the journal
Documents, "New York Was Yesterday." Finally, in his newest essays he reformulates early themes, and, in "My Postmodernism" (written for Artforum's fortieth anniversary issue) and "More Operative Assumptions" (written especially for this book), he reexamines the underlying ideas of his practice and sums up his theoretical concerns.

In his mature work, Bordowitz seeks to join the subjective -- the experience of having a disease -- and the objective -- the fact of the disease as a global problem. He believes that this conjunction is necessary for understanding and fighting the crisis. "If it can be written," he says, "then it can be realized."

The MIT Press

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780262524599
Publisher:
MIT Press
Publication date:
04/01/2006
Series:
Writing Art
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
285
Product dimensions:
7.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.75(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Table of Contents

Foreword
1Geography notes : a survey1
2Picture a coalition19
3The AIDS crisis is ridiculous43
4Operative assumptions69
5Boat trip95
6Dense moments113
7Present tense141
8New York was yesterday147
Lonely is the city149
A conversation with Delmore Schwartz157
Renew our days165
A solemn assembly172
Hurry down sunshine177
9Which is more powerful : the word or the idea?189
10What the world needs now : South African HIVers counter doomsday images with profiles in radical courage201
11The effort to survive AIDS considered from the point of view of a race-car driver213
12My postmodernism221
13More operative assumptions241
Selected writings of Gregg Bordowitz298

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