Nan Goldin at the MoMA
By Elana Kates
Beginning in June, The Museum of Modern Art will be exhibiting Nan Goldin’s influential slideshow, The Ballad of Sexual Dependency. The Ballad, which was first publicly shown in 1985 at the Whitney Biennial, is presented in 35mm format. The work consists of almost 700 images—intimate, snapshot aesthetic portraits that chronicle hard-drug subculture in New York’s Lower East Side with remarkable empathy. Goldin is distinguished for these diaristic portrayals, which eschew a customarily detached method of documentary photography. Instead, her images are raw and candid in their frank depiction of a community devastated by the AIDS crisis.
The slideshow is accompanied with its original soundtrack, an atmospheric score of music by artists ranging from The Velvet Underground to Maria Callas. The exhibition appears with documents from the artist’s archives, including posters and flyers from early presentations of The Ballad. Live performances will periodically accompany the exhibition
Article © Elana Kates