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Hal Fischer, A Salesman, 1979/2017, ink-jet print on vinyl, 6' 10“ × 14' 10” × 2".

Hal Fischer

Project Native Informant

Hal Fischer, A Salesman, 1979/2017, ink-jet print on vinyl, 6' 10“ × 14' 10” × 2".

A Salesman, 1979/2017, the central work that took up the entire back wall of the gallery in Hal Fischer’s exhibition “Gay Semiotics,” was originally installed as a billboard at the gateway to San Francisco’s Castro district, famously the center of gay pride activism in the 1960s and 1970s. Commissioned as part of a billboard exhibition organized by the Eyes and Ears Foundation and funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, it shows a naked man on a bed sporting a moustache. He is lying on one side, in white sheets, in a pose that recalls such iconic female nudes as Manet’s Olympia, 1863. But in its original context, the billboard also played off a familiar advertisement for the men’s clothing store Hastings that featured a sexy male model and was displayed all over San Francisco at the time, and the photograph was also inspired by the famous 1972 Burt Reynolds centerfold in

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