I was commissioned by Tate Modern to develop this special event as a response to the work of Barbara Hammer. I focused on Hammer’s Superdyke Meets Madame X, and curated the episodic video project Falling in Love With Chris and Greg by Chris Vargas and Greg Youmans.

In 1976 Barbara Hammer filmed an exciting sexual meet and greet with Max Almay. In 2008 Chris Vargas and Greg Youmans began making a series that satirized the challenges of their genderqueer relationship. With striking similarities and crucial differences with these two projects are end points of radical sexual representation. Hammer was the first to invite the camera into the lesbian body while 30 years later Vargas and Youmans breakdown the current state of trans feminist intimacy. Sharing humor, hippie genders, radical politics and San Francisco, but diverging on scripting, the precedent of reality tv, talking about sex instead of showing it, and transgender identity. 
Vargas and Youmans are cognizant of Hammer, students of queer film history, and they, like Hammer, are working to insert not just political questions of representation, but their intimacy, into the discourse.

Exhibition Checklist:

  1. Barbara Hammer, Superdyke Meets Madame X, 1976. Single-channel video (black and white, sound); 28 minutes. Made with Max Almy.
  2. Chris Vargas and Greg Youmans, O Canada!, 2008. Single-channel video; 18 minutes. In the premiere episode of “Falling In Love. . .,” Chris and Greg tackle the issues of open relationships, Canadianism, and lactose intolerance.
  3. Chris Vargas and Greg Youmans, Road Trip! TV Special, 2008. Single-channel video; 23 minutes. In the sophomore episode of “Falling In Love. . .,” Chris and Greg explore the epic topics of gay marriage and pregnant men during a road trip through the American Southwest.
  4. Chris Vargas and Greg Youmans, A Special Election PSA, 2008. Single-channel video; 3 minutes. Chris and Greg offer some advice to consider before heading to the polls.
  5. Chris Vargas and Greg Youmans, Hair Breakdown Special, 2009. Single-channel video; 4 minutes. A receding hair line throws Chris into crisis. Greg just wants to cuddle.
Into the Body or Into the Medium, Barbara Hammer, 2012. Tate Modern, London. Organized on the occasion of Barbara Hammer: The Fearless Frame, an exhibition curated by Stuart Comer.

Link to event page