WThe New York Public Library  /  Photographers’ Identities Catalog
PIC ID: 2325

Robert Giard

American, 1939-2002


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Robert Giard (1939-2002) was a self-taught photographer of landscapes and nudes, but it is for his portraiture that he is now best known. After seeing Larry Kramer's 1985 play The Normal Heart, Giard set about to photograph gay and lesbian writers and activists. Against the backdrop of the escalating AIDS crisis and growing public hysteria, Giard sought out those from whom he derived strength and inspiration. The resulting archive includes significant figures from before the Stonewall era to his own contemporaries, and each image highlights the individuality of its subject. Aptly titled Particular Voices, Giard's photographs form a collective portrait, while resisting homogenizing or simplifying the gay and lesbian community. The New York Public Library began acquiring these portraits in 1990, adding to its already significant holdings of LGBTQ materials. MIT Press published a selection of these portraits in 1997, and the following year the New York Public Library mounted Particular Voices: Robert Giard's Portraits of Gay and Lesbian Writers, an exhibition of 110 prints from this collection.

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Robert Giard has 3 locations.

Birth (1939)

Hartford, CT

Active in

Amagansett, NY

Death (2002)

Chicago, IL