Felix Gonzalez-Torres
Felix Gonzalez-Torres

1957 born in Güaimaro, Cuba, the third of what would eventually be four children

1964 Dad bought me a set of watercolors and gave me my first cat

1971 sent to Spain with my sister Gloria, then went to Puerto Rico to live with my uncle

1976 Gloria and I moved to our own apartment – small, but full of sunlight

1976 met my friend Mario

1978 met Jeff in Puerto Rico

1977 Rosa

1979 moved to New York City

1979 returned to Cuba to see my parents after an eight-year separation

1980 met Luis at the beach

1981 parents escaped Cuba during Mariel boat lift, my brother Mario and sister Mayda escaped with them

1983 received BFA from Pratt Institute

1983 Ross at the Boybar

1985 Jeff gave me Pebbles and Biko, two Lilac Point Siamese cats – hardly able to support myself, and now with two cats to feed, only Jeff

1985 first trip to Europe, first summer with Ross

1986 summer in Venice, studied Venetian painting and architecture

1986 blue kitchen, blue flowers in Toronto – a real home for the first time in so long, so long, Ross is here

1986 Mother died of leukemia

1987 received MFA from the International Center of Photography and New York University

1987 Wawanaisa Lake: beavers, wild brown bears, Harry retrieved every buoy he sees, New York Times every morning, duck cabin

1987 joined Group Material

1989 fall of the Berlin Wall

1990 Myriam died

1990 moved to L.A. with Ross (already very sick), Harry the dog, Biko, and Pebbles, the Ravenswood, Rossmore, golden hours, Ann and Chris by the pool, magic hour, rented a red car, money for the first time, no more waiting on tables, Golden Girls, great students at CalArts, Millie and Catherine, went back to Madrid after almost twenty years – sweet revenge

1990 silver ocean in San Francisco

1990 first show with Andrea Rosen

1991 Ross died of AIDS, Dad died three weeks later, a hundred small yellow envelopes of my lover’s ashes – his last will

1991 Jorge stopped talking to me, I’m lost – Claudio and Miami Beach saved me

1991 Bruno and Mary, two black cats Ross found in Toronto, came to live with me

1991 the world I knew is gone, moved the four cats, books, and a few things to a new apartment

1991 went back to L.A., hospitalized for ten days

1991 Julie moved from Brooklyn to Manhattan

1992 Jeff died of AIDS

1992 President Clinton – hope, twelve years of trickle-down economics came to an end

1992 the forces of hate and ignorance are alive and well in Oregon and Colorado, among other places

1992 started to collect George Nelson clocks and furniture

1993 moved to 24th Street

1993 Sam Nunn is such a sissy, peace might be possible in the Middle East

1993 three years since Ross died, painted kitchen floor bright orange, this book

The above represents the biography that Felix Gonzalez-Torres wrote for “Felix Gonzalez-Torres” (New York: A.R.T. Press, 1993)