In the lead up to the opening of the New York City AIDS Memorial, Surface spoke with notable cultural figures who experienced the height of the crisis. Jenny Holzer turned excerpts from those interviews into a new series of artworks projected on the city's buildings.
Vocalist and Composer
Image: friend with eight glass prongs extruding from his ribcage, the lungs (New York, 1984). My roommate: treated like crap by the male prisoners—patients—”You brought it on yourself” (San Francisco, 1985). Sweet smell of jaundice. Image of my angel: eyes popped with terror, a tube coming from the neck artery (San Diego, 1986). The air is humid and lime green and the city is silent, thousands of eyeballs on vigils in small dark rooms, that stink of sweat, urine, and feces through the endless days. The city is screaming (New York, 1988). The heresy of a greeting. Image of dearest friend: body made miniature, staring at me and crying, sitting in a hospital, the room cavernous. Goodbye (New York, 1996).
View the full collaboration here: Reflecting on AIDS: Jenny Holzer in Collaboration with Surface
Artwork by Jenny Holzer
©2016 Jenny Holzer, member Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Photos: Dani Vernon