# HIV HEROES

VANGARDIST

128

F: I can add a few more to the list:

“nigger”, “whore”, “junkie”! It wasn’t

long ago that we started to dismantle

traditional relationship structures and,

especially in less urban areas, the typical

heterosexual relationship with two

children is still seen as the norm. And

so someone who’s stuck in this conservative

“neo-bourgeois” concept

and confronted with HIV will probably

think: “Thank God that could never

happen in my safe, healthy world. And

well, the fact that John got it doesn’t

surprise anyone, does it? Because he

sleeps with prostitutes!” And the media

supports this kind of attitude. You’ll

never read about, say, a nice student

couple who have a completely “normal”

relationship and both have AIDS,

but obviously the example of the junkie

they find in the street we do hear

about, because he had sex with a dealer

from Africa. So the prevalent attitude

is still that AIDS only affects those that

you should stay away from anyway—

those who supposedly threaten the

system. We tend to forget that it’s precisely

because of the threatening role

they’re attributed to having that many

of these people are struggling with social

marginalisation. Among everyone I

know here in Vienna, homosexuality is

generally dealt with quite openly, and I

think in that respect we’re quite a good

model city. Conchita taking part in the

Song Contest for example was quite a

good message to promote tolerance

in the world. And then, in comparison,

we have someone like Andreas Gabalier

who, in his role as a “poor hetero”

feels threatened by things he refuses

to understand! That’s one of the few

things that really piss me off.

V: When looking at your pictures, the

viewer often feels a bit caught out, because

the images make you think of

the porn you’ve watched, even though

you know it’s art you’re looking at,

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kein titel Filius de Lacroix, 2014

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