The Brooklym museum is refusing to budge in the face of calls for David Wojnarowicz's video A Fire My Belly to be removed from the Hide/Seek exhibition, saying the artwork is “an expression of the artist's outrage at indifference to human suffering during the early years of the AIDS crisis.
The co-curator of the exhibition, Jonathan Katz, has also weighed in saying the work belongs to a centuries-old tradition of using the imagery of Jesus Christ's crucifixion as a metaphor for human suffering. “What gets lost in all this brouhaha is how thoroughly informed he is by a Catholic iconographic tradition and how he is reinvigorating it to describe new social realities” Katz said of the artist. “This is a work of art of great complexity and sensitivity.”
Image: David Wojnarowicz, A Fire in My Belly (1987), video still