A Fire In My Belly, A Work in Progress
One Day This Kid.
The National Portrait Gallery, part of the Smithsonian Institution, has been the site of controversy since December 1, when museum officials responded to political pressures and removed a film by the late artist David Wojnarowicz from the exhibition Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture. In response to this crisis, two versions of the film A Fire in My Belly, A Work in Progress (1986-87) will be on view at the Henry Art Gallery until February 13, 2011, when Hide/Seek closes at the national Portrait Gallery.
The Henry’s installation will also include Wojnarowicz’s poster project Untitled (One Day This Kid) (1990) which has been made available for download through the artist’s estate and P.P.O.W. Gallery ; and a selection of statements (from the Smithsonian, the Catholic League, the Warhol Foundation, the Association of Art Museum Directors, and from regional museum directors). A display of articles and essays sparked by these events will also be available, including. This display of resources for discussion is expandable, and as the conversation continues Henry staff will incorporate new materials.
A Fire in My Belly, A Work in Progress, into which the artist has edited a montage of video footage shot in Mexico, has been said to capture his anger and struggle with both the death of a lover and his own H.I.V. diagnosis. Since its making, this film has become an iconic art work from the 1980s and has had a visible place in AIDS activism in New York and the U.S.