Hallmark Art Collection is pleased to announce the acquisition of a major work by artist, writer and activist David Wojnarowicz. Biography of Peter Hujar (7 Miles a Second) is a moving tribute to Wojnarowicz’s close friend and mentor, painted shortly after Hujar passed away due to complications from AIDS. The work is especially notable for the inclusion of the mathematical formula for “escape velocity” (7 miles/second), the speed at which a mass must travel to break free of the earth’s gravity. With this poignant detail, Wojnarowicz transforms a very personal experience into an enduring meditation on death and transcendence.
This painting debuted in Wojnarowicz’s 1989 landmark exhibition In the Shadow of Forward Motion at P.P.O.W. Gallery in New York. In his closing notes of the catalogue written and designed by the artist for the exhibition, the philosopher Felix Guattari wrote: “David Wojnarowicz’s intention is strictly ideological: his aim is to effect the world at large; he attempts to create imaginary weapons to resist established powers.”
Biography of Peter Hujar (7 Miles a Second) was recently acquired by Hallmark directly from the artist’s estate and is the first work by the artist to enter the Hallmark Art Collection. It will be included in the forthcoming monograph to be published by the Whitney Museum of American Art.