cover image AIDS Demo Graphics

AIDS Demo Graphics

Douglas Crimp. Bay Press (WA), $13.95 (141pp) ISBN 978-0-941920-16-2

In what the authors call a ``do-it-yourself manual, showing how to make propaganda work in the fight against AIDS,'' they depict a history of demonstrations, sit-ins and similar steps taken by ACT UP and other groups. The volume is illustrated with photos of the protests as well as graphics used in conjunction with them, such as a poster featuring a penis and the words: ``Sexism Rears Its Unprotected Head/Men: Use Condoms or Beat It'' (according to Bay Press, Arcata Graphics, the book's original printer, reneged on its contract with Bay, citing ``sensitive'' material). One typical entry, recounting ACT UP's civil disobedience at FDA headquarters, is accompanied by a placard saying, ``Time isn't the only thing the FDA is killing.'' Another describes the group Gran Fury's ``same-sex kiss-in,'' publicized with two posters: one a WW II photo of kissing sailors, the other showing a lesbian couple from a 1920s stage play. Slogans and images outnumber substantiated arguments about appropriate approaches to take regarding AIDS, and this book will best suit those already convinced of the efficacy of public and publicity-conscious protest as opposed to other forms of action. The authors are ACT UP activists; Crimp is a freelance art critic and Rolston is an architect. (Aug.)