The following performance was recorded at Gimme Danger on March 28, 2018. Through anecdotes from his own life as well as music, poetry, and philosophy, Gregg Bordowitz reflected on countercultural forms that once seemed liberating because they could link the struggles of various stigmatized groups. He then spoke with Corrine Fitzpatrick, the guest editor of Risk Pool.
“Gimme danger, little stranger / And I feel your disease.”
—Iggy & the Stooges, “Gimme Danger,” 1973
For Gimme Danger, Gregg Bordowitz will speak about rebellion and freedom as associated with embracing outcasts, outsiders, queers, perverts, addicts, and other agents of chaos. In doing so, he’ll evaluate how art has—through romanticism, decadence, and punk—reversed the stigma associated with “disease.” Bordowitz, a queer person with AIDS who has been considered a vector of contagion for his adult life, will focus on the counter-cultural forms that once seemed liberating because they could link the struggles of various stigmatized groups.
Illness impinges on all aspects of who we are, on our ethnicity, sexuality, gender, class, and nationality. Using intersectionality as the basis for identity formation, Bordowitz will break down the ways in which illness upsets and defines all terms of identity. He’ll draw on anecdotes from his own life as well as music, poetry, and philosophy, which he’ll present and analyze in an improvised lecture. A key to this performance is Erving Goffman’s Stigma: Notes on the Management of a Spoiled Identity (1963), which examines the experiences and strategies of people who are unable to act like “normals.”
The performance will be followed by a conversation with Bordowitz and Corrine Fitzpatrick, the guest editor of Risk Pool, the magazine issue that includes “Gimme Danger.” Risk Pool asks: how are sickness and wellness defined, and by whom? What are the effects of these definitions, these acts of naming and describing?
Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. In order to ensure that events are accessible and comfortable, we’ll open the doors at 6:30 p.m. and strictly limit admittance to our legal capacity. Please check Triple Canopy’s Facebook and Twitter accounts for updates, as we’ll indicate if events are sold out.
Triple Canopy’s venue is located at 264 Canal Street, 3W, near several Canal Street subway stations. Our floor is accessible by elevator (63" × 60" car, 31" door) and stairway. Due to the age and other characteristics of the building, our bathrooms are not ADA-accessible, though several such bathrooms are located nearby. If you have specific questions about access, please write at least three days before the event and we will make every effort to accommodate you.
- Gregg Bordowitz is an artist, writer, and teacher. He is the author of The AIDS Crisis Is Ridiculous and Other Writings, 1986–2003 (The MIT Press, 2004), General Idea: Imagevirus (Afterall Books, 2010), Volition (Printed Matter, Badlands Unlimited, 2010), and Glenn Ligon: Untitled (I Am a Man) (Afterall, 2018).