Fire in the Belly: The Life and Times of David Wojnarowicz

Fire in the Belly: The Life and Times of David Wojnarowicz

by Cynthia Carr, Sara Stemen
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Overview

Fire in the Belly: The Life and Times of David Wojnarowicz by Cynthia Carr, Sara Stemen

In December 2010, the National Portrait Gallery in Washington made headlines when it responded to protests from the Catholic League by voluntarily censoring an excerpt of David Wojnarowicz’s A Fire in My Belly from its show on American portraiture.

Why a work of art could stir such emotions is at the heart of Cynthia Carr’s Fire in the Belly, the first biography of a beleaguered art-world figure who became one of the most important voices of his generation. Wojnarowicz emerged from a Dickensian childhood that included orphanages, abusive and absent parents, and a life of hustling on the street. He first found acclaim in New York’s East Village, a neighborhood noted in the 1970s and ’80s for its abandoned buildings, junkies, and burgeoning art scene. Along with Keith Haring, Nan Goldin, and Jean-Michel Basquiat, Wojnarowicz helped redefine art for the times.

As uptown art collectors looked downtown for the next big thing, this community of cultural outsiders was suddenly thrust into the national spotlight. The ensuing culture war, the neighborhood’s gentrification, and the AIDS crisis then devastated the East Village scene. Wojnarowicz died of AIDS in 1992 at the age of thirty-seven. Carr’s brilliant biography traces the untold story of a controversial and seminal figure at a pivotal moment in American culture.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781596915336
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Publication date: 07/17/2012
Pages: 624
Product dimensions: 15.20(w) x 9.30(h) x 2.10(d)

About the Author

Cynthia Carr was a columnist and arts reporter for the Village Voice from 1984 to 2003. Writing under the byline C. Carr, she specialized in experimental and cutting-edge art, especially performance art. Some of these pieces are now collected in On Edge: Performance at the End of the Twentieth Century. She is also the author of Our Town: A Heartland Lynching, a Haunted Town, and the Hidden History of White America. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Artforum, Bookforum, Modern Painters, the Drama Review, and other publications. She was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2007. Carr lives in New York.

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Fire in the Belly: The Life and Times of David Wojnarowicz 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cynthia Carr has hit the stickball out of the neighborhood. She takes us on a journey which forces us to confront his fears as well as our own. It is concise in its mystery of this man and his art...and the mystery of a movement, and the courage of creation. We walk with him and discover that true "Fire in the Belly." Read it with courage and wonder.