Spirit of Radicalism

How Artists use art to fight pandemics: Abe Rybeck, Jay Critchley, Mikki Ansin & Michael Dowling

Peter Ansin, a former manager of business development for Twentieth Century Fox, died of AIDS at 34 in 1992. The Ansin Building in Boston is the largest facility ever constructed by an organization with a specific mission to serve the LGBT community. It was dedicated in memory of Peter Ansin. His photograph (Fig. 7) of the ACT UP demonstration at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), outside Washington, DC, on October 11, 1988, shows street performance at its best. The demonstration closed down the FDA to protest the slow process of drug approval. They argued that because HIV was an incurable disease, new drugs should be reviewed as quickly as possible. After countless protests, the FDA eventually streamlined the review process for key HIV medications, including AZT, and within a few years introduced rules to fast-track approval for drugs. His work will be on the back wall Ansin is his last name.