Chris McKim’s impassioned documentary Wojnarowicz: F**k You F*ggot F**ker illustrates how the Reagan administration’s inaction during the HIV/AIDS pandemic emboldened David Wojnarowicz’s activism.
Though the documentary was finished just before the coronavirus pandemic began in the spring of 2020, viewers will be immediately struck by the parallel perils and biases of David’s time and our own. “AIDS was revealing exactly what society was about,” suggests David’s friend and collaborator Marion Scemama.
This one-hour-and-forty-five-minute documentary takes its title from a homophobic doodle David found on the streets of New York, which he incorporated into a painting of the same name (below). It makes insightful use of David’s tape recordings, videos, Super 8 films, and other ephemera, which McKim spent years researching in the Downtown Collection of New York University’s Fales Library & Special Collections.
The film features a number of of David’s friends and collaborators: photographers Nan Goldin and Peter Hujar, filmmaker Richard Kern, cultural critic Fran Lebowitz, artist Kiki Smith, and many others.
See the film in its entirety at the bottom of this page (or YouTube).