# HIV HEROES

VANGARDIST

126

0004

der stricher, Filius de Lacroix, 2013

V: In your opinion, what determines

whether or not a piece of art is perceived

as pornographic?

F: I think what’s essential to understanding

this is that this perception happens

inside the viewer’s head. If what I see

corresponds to some erotic desire of

mine, it becomes pornographic; or

also, if I see something that I can’t reconcile

with my own ethical values.

V: With the way you reprocess porn

films, you confront social phenomena

everyone thought had been long

overcome, yet even half a century after

the hippie generation an open approach

to sexuality remains an illusion.

Do you see it as the artist’s job

to stimulate open public discourse by

provocation and exposure of our vulnerabilities?

F: The way I see it, that’s the main purpose

of art! Too often, art’s only role

is to fit into your beautiful designer

apartment, even if it’s cheap and made

by IKEA. Art has been reduced to fulfilling

a decorative role for ordinary

middle-class consumers or serving as

an object of capitalist speculation for

collectors who only buy what’s expensive

and is likely to become even

more expensive. And if you make art

that, at first glance, doesn’t look like

it might fit into a designer apartment,

you hardly stand a chance of getting

a good gallery interested in you. But

that’s a disaster, because art’s purpose

shouldn’t be that it’s beautiful, but that

it addresses problems!

V: When confronting people with HIV,

no matter what their social background,

many unfortunately still

associate it with things like promiscuity,

homosexuality and guilt due to

a lack of responsibility. Why do you

think these prejudices are so deeply

rooted?

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