Dancing Ledge

Derek Jarman, Author, Shaun Allen, Editor Overlook Press $24.95 (256p) ISBN 978-0-87951-493-8
Originally published a decade ago in England under the title Queerlife, this brutally candid memoir by British artist and filmmaker Jarman offers a glimpse into the making of such controversial films as Sebastiane , The Tempest and Caravaggio. Writing in a diary format, Jarman jumps back and forth in time, discussing his acceptance of his homosexuality at age 16 (he was born in 1942) and his strong belief that a fully realized sexuality must drive art and politics. Interwoven with accounts of the financial and emotional hardships of a life devoted to filmmaking are explicit descriptions of sexual explorations conducted around the globe. Diagnosed as HIV-positive in 1986 (this was dealt with more fully in an earlier memoir, At Your Own Risk ), Jarman advocates sexual caution but resists renouncing his past and continues to preserve gay history through his art. Photos not seen by PW. (July)
Reviewed on: 06/28/1993
Release date: 07/01/1993
Genre: Nonfiction
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