Rebelliously struggling against conformity and materialism, multidisciplinary artist, writer and activist David Wojnarowicz was one of the most potent voices of his generation. Born in New Jersey in 1954, Wojnarowicz lived an extremely difficult childhood brought on by an abusive family life and an emerging sense of his own homosexuality. He dropped out of high school and was living on the streets by the age of sixteen, eventually settling in New York's East Village in 1978. As part of the first wave of East Village artists he befriended and collaborated with many notable artists, including photographer Nan Goldin. By the late 1970s Wojnarowicz’s work took on a focus of “making and preserving an authentic version of history that would contest state-supported forms of ‘history.’” (Wojnarowicz)

Wojnarowicz’s perspective from the fringe directly opposed the idea of a nicely tuned, harmonic society, instead promoting the uncontrollable noise of radical diversity. Diagnosed with AIDS in the 1980s, his art took on a more sharply political edge regarding medical research and funding, and morality and censorship in the arts. He died of AIDS-related illness in New York in 1992, at age 37.

CTM 2015’s Opening Concert on 24 January pays homage to Wojnarowicz’s powerful untuned stance through the world premiere of the latest work by Soundwalk Collective with American photographer Nan Goldin and video artist Tina Frank. "A Memoir Of Disintegration" is a sound composition based on David Wojnarowicz’s homonymous and provocative correspondence that explores and captures existence at the margin of society in 1980s underground New York City. An intense and dark journey over street life, drugs, art and nature, politics, friendship, and acceptance, the live performance features Nan Goldin interpreting the most expressive excerpts of Wojnarowicz’s writings. Soundwalk Collective perform a live musical score thick with jarring physicality juxtaposed to a sound memento of field recordings from New York City throughout the past two decades. With live visuals from video artist Tina Frank, and Samuel Rohrer on drums.

Film by Barbara Klein

The live visuals consist of excerpts of the following films:

Richard Kern
From the series American Obsessions 1983

Featuring David Wojnarowicz

Super 8 on digital video, color, silent
1:21 min
Courtesy of the artist and P.P.O.W Gallery, New York

Richard Kern
You Killed Me First 1985

Featuring David Wojnarowicz, Nick Cooper, Jessica Craig- Martin, Karen Finley, Montanna Houston, Lung Leg
Music by J.G. Thirlwell

Super 8 on digital video, color, sound

12:00 min
Courtesy of the artist and P.P.O.W Gallery, New York

Marion Scemama and David Wojnarowicz

Last Night I Took A Man 1989

Performance and Dialogue: David Wojnarowicz Camera and Direction: Marion ScemamaSuper 8 on digital video, color, sound

4:33 min
Courtesy of Marion Scemama, the Estate of David Wojnaorwicz and P.P.O.W Gallery, New York

Tommy Turner and David Wojnarowicz

Where Evil Dwells 1985

Featuring Joe Coleman, Devil Doodie, Baby Gregor, Richard Klemann, Lung Leg, Jack Nantz, Rockets Redglare, Tommy Turner, Charlotte Webb, Scott Werner, David Wojnarowicz Music by AC/DC, J.G. Thirlwell and Wiseblood
Super 8 on digital video, black and white, sound
31:10 min
Courtesy of Tommy Turner, the Estate of David Wojnarowicz and P.P.O.W Gallery, New York

David Wojnarowicz

Heroin 1981

16 mm film on digital video, black and white, silent
2:33 mins
Courtesy of the Estate of David Wojnarowicz and P.P.O.W Gallery, New York

David Wojnarwociz

A Fire In My Belly (Excerpt) 1986-87

Super 8 on digital video, black and white, color, silent
7:00 min
Courtesy of the Estate of David Wojnarowicz and P.P.O.W Gallery, New York

David Wojnarowicz

Beautiful People 1988 featuring Jesse Hultberg

Super 8 on digital video, silent
34 minutes, courtesy of the Estate of David Wojnarowicz and P.P.O.W Gallery, New York

David Wojnarowicz

ITSOFOMO (in the shadow of forward motion)
Collaboration with Ben Neill
originally performed in 1989, audio recorded in 1991
DVD
22 minutes, courtesy of the Estate of David Wojnarowicz and P.P.O.W Gallery, New York

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Soundwalk Collective is a an art collective based in New York & Berlin, working primarily with sound for installations & live performances.

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