Image credit: Annie Leibovitz, Ellen DeGeneresfrom HIDE/SEEK;NY Daily News; Savid Wojnarowicz, A Fire in My Belly still. Courtesy of The Estate of David Wojnarowicz and P.P.O.W Gallery, New York
It’s impossible to round off the year without mentioning the Brooklyn Museum’s HIDE/SEEK: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture exhibit, a comprehensive exploration of gender and sexuality in art and queer culture. Once again, it’s inspired some “It’s not art! It’s disgusting!” quips, dutifully collected and sensationalized by tabloids like the NY Daily News. Perhaps they were nostalgic for all the provocative headlines that the original HIDE/SEEK exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery inspired in 2010, when David Wojnarowicz’s “offensive,”complex video piece was censored by the Smithsonian. So, they rehashed some “Crucifix Outrage,” specifically: “Another unholy controversy at Brooklyn museum: Video of ants skittering over crucified Jesus is enraging Christians… The 10-second crucifix segment is spliced between other bizarre scenes.” Bizarre? Alright, just stick to Victoria’s Secrets then.