Sex in an Epidemic
Jean Carlomusto’s films are unorthodox investigative reports on subjects that have been all but erased from history. Her documentaries have been exhibited internationally in festivals, museums and on television. In L IS FOR THE WAY YOU LOOK, she pieced together lesbian history using whatever scraps of gossip and memory she could find. In TO CATCH A GLIMPSE, she delved into her family history by trying to find out if the rumors about her grandmother's death -- from a botched abortion in 1939 --were true. Her celebrated work, SHATZI IS DYING, is a multilayered treatise exploring queer culture, AIDS politics, life and death, traced through the near-death experiences of a beloved rescue dog.
In 1987, Carlomu sto began making videos for Gay Men’s Health Crisis after a stint as the projectionist for their Safer Sex Workshops. Her GMHC co-productions have helped to bring about positive change in the face of the epidemic, and include DOCTORS, LIARS AND WOMEN, AIDS ACTIVISTS SAY NO TO COSMO, SEIZE CONTROL OF THE FDA and SAFER SEX SHORTS. Her current documentary, SEX IN AN EPIDEMIC, is the outgrowth of over 20-years of making videos about the HIV/AIDS movement. She was a member of the Testing the Limits AIDS Video Collective and the Act Up NY affinity group, DIVA TV. Her interactive video altar, OFFERINGS, which commemorates AIDS activists, has been featured at the Fowler Museum in Los Angeles, The Museum of the City of New York, and has toured South Africa as part of the Make Art/Stop AIDS project.
Carlomusto is a professor of Media Arts at Long Island University.