Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture is the first major museum exhibition to focus on portraiture and the representation of gay and lesbian identities in American art. The show contains well over 100 drawings, paintings, photographs and videos divided into six themes: Before Difference (the late 19th century); Modernism (the early 20th century to 1930); The 1930s and After (art up to Abstract Expressionism); Consensus and Conflict (AbEx and the Beat Generation); Stonewall and After (art following the 1969 Stonewall riots); AIDS (art concerned with the ongoing AIDS/HIV epidemic that began in the mid- to late-1980s); and New Beginnings (art from the last 15 years).
Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture is on view at the National Portrait Gallery, Washington, D.C. from October 30, 2010 through February 13, 2011. The exhibition itself has been somewhat overshadowed by the controversy surrounding David Wojnarowicz's video, A Fire in My Belly, and that is a pity on at least two levels. The rest of the show is worthy of consideration for its central theme and, of course, the art.