Performing an archive in a Superdyke T-shirt and a Cultural Worker jumpsuit.

Vintage Beinecke

by Barbara Hammer

Digital Project Published on January 16, 2019

After months of sorting, cataloguing, and packing her papers for accession into the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University, Barbara Hammer was falling into a “slump.” The seventy-nine-year-old artist confessed, “Letting these boxes out my studio door after nearly fifty years of living together was not an easy thing.” Then she discovered a duffel bag stuffed with outfits she used to wear for film screenings and performances. “I had a ball pulling out all the costumes and performed in them with my beloved film equipment as props. What fun to gather together a Superdyke T-shirt and a Cultural Worker jumpsuit, put them on, and strike crazy poses.”

In “Vintage Beinecke,” art-directed by Florrie Burke and shot by Lou Bank, the documentation of this intimate performance appears as an animation of digital photographs. The work was first presented during Hammer’s lecture on living with advanced cancer and making art, “The Art of Dying or (Palliative Art Making in the Age of Anxiety),” on October 10, 2018, at the Whitney Museum in New York City.

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