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LIFELINES: Art, Intimacy, and HIV—an Intergenerational Conversation

June 18 @ 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM


Please join artist Eric Rhein, in conversation with Jonathan Coleman and Paul Michael Brown as they celebrate and reflect upon the themes that run through Eric’s first monograph-memoir, ERIC RHEIN: LIFELINES —which includes a key essay by Paul Michael Brown.

ERIC RHEIN: LIFELINES is the first monograph devoted to the artist. It features intimate photographs taken between 1989 and 2012. These compelling images highlight tenderness and care as lifesaving instincts. Included in the book are related bodies of work: delicate assemblages and wire drawings that often serve as memorials for fallen friends.

Eric, Jon, and Paul will discuss the overlapping contexts in which they came of-age—and how they emerged, matured, and created within an era of crisis.

Eric will show artworks and intimate photographs from LIFELINES; Paul will read from his essay, showing the richness of thought, heart, and history which make the book both an artistic expression and an historic document. Jon will join the conversation

The discussion will be opened to questions from the audience.

“These images affirm the desiring self at a moment when the desire had become dangerous…”

—Mark Doty

Registration on Eventbrite is required in order to receive the Zoom link on the day of the event.

Closed-captioning will be available.

Suggested donation to benefit the Bureau: $5.

All are welcome to join, with or without a donation.

You can make a donation when you register.


Click here to register


Purchase ERIC RHEIN: LIFELINES on or before Friday, June 18th, 2021, and receive 25% off: $30 (regularly $40)


Thank you for supporting the Bureau by purchasing books from us!


About the participants:

Eric Rhein has gained international recognition as an artist whose work embodies themes of love, sexuality, and identity as explored through his ever-evolving experience with HIV. In 1996 Rhein began his ongoing project Leaves, a memorial honoring the lives of over 300 individuals he knew who died of complications from AIDS. Rhein’s work has been exhibited widely in the United States and abroad. Reviews have appeared in the New York Times, Huffington Post, ARTnews, Vanity Fair, and Art in America. He is included in the Smithsonian Archives of American Art’s Visual Arts and the AIDS Epidemic: An Oral History Project. Rhein currently lives in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York City.


Jonathan Coleman, Ph.D. is the Co-founder and President of Faulkner Morgan Archive, Inc., a nonprofit that saves and shares the LGBTQ history of Kentucky. He was the James Still Fellow at the University of Kentucky, earning his doctorate in history in 2014. He often lectures on queer history and was a consultant for the Kentucky LGBT Heritage Initiative funded by the National Park Service. Coleman’s first book, Anywhere, Together: A Queer History of Kentucky, is forthcoming from the University Press of Kentucky.


Paul Michael Brown is a writer and curator based in Lexington, Kentucky. He is the former direc-tor of Institute 193 and was the recipient of the 2020 Arts Writer’s Grant. His research and writ-ing has included a focus on queer and self-taught practitioners from the American South. Brown curated the 2019 exhibition ERIC RHEIN: LIFELEINES at Institute 193 and 21c Lexington, which served as the inspiration for this book.





Online event
New York, NY United States


Bureau of General Services—Queer Division