Most New Yorkers know Housing Works as merely a bookshop or as a collection of higher-end thrift shops. Its story is much bigger: since its emergence out of ACT UP in 1990, this tirelessly radical organization has built over 200 units of permanent and transitional housing for homeless individuals living with HIV/ AIDS in New York City. It has also provided vital medical, dental, and mental health care, job training, legal aid, and other supportive services to over 20,000 clients. Along the way, it has confronted NIMBYism in SoHo, Harlem, and the Lower East Side; sued the Giuliani Administration (and won); built residential and medical facilities; and - crucially - never stopped speaking out.
In this presentation, Gavin Browning will lead a tour through and share the creative process that went into assembling Housing Works History, a multimedia timeline of the housing and supportive services built by Housing Works. It features archival media, tee-shirts, posters, architectural drawings, HIV and AIDS infection-rate data, key moments in US housing policy, beautiful graphic design, and five original films spotlighting advocates, architects and residents.
GAVIN BROWNING is the editor and producer of Housing Works History, and the editor of Group Efforts: Changing Public Space and The Studio-X New York Guide. His work has been displayed at the Museum of the City of New York and supported by the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts. He is the Director of Public Programs and Engagement at Columbia University School of the Arts.