This program was online only.

Be the first to see Chilean artist Alfredo Jaar’s Between the Heavens and Me as the artist debuts his 13-minute film, a somber and elegiac meditation on the Covid-19 pandemic in New York. Following the screening, Jaar will join Hirshhorn chief curator Stéphane Aquin for a discussion on his belief in the power of art to address the traumatic events that challenge our culture today. Between the Heavens and Me is the artist’s submission to the Museum’s ongoing Hirshhorn Artist Diaries video archive.

Between the Heavens and Me

Jaar is an artist, architect, and filmmaker who fled his homeland of Chile during the brutal dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. As an immigrant, an artist, and an idealist, he has spent over three decades exploring the failures of the world and attempting to inspire change through his art.

Two light boxes with color transparency photos of a person in one and the person's head in the other

Alfredo Jaar, Cries and Whispers, 1988

In Cries and Whispers, which was on view recently in Manifesto: Art x Agency, Jaar depicts a Brazilian gold miner holding a handful of money from multiple perspectives—full body view and close-up of his face. He positions the sitter at the edge of the frame while giving equal weight to the adjacent blank space, removing context clues and emphasizing the humanity of this figure, who is literally stuck at the margins.

Now based in New York, Jaar makes work that addresses many of the horrors of our time, from torture and genocide to the public’s desensitization to media images of human rights violations such as war and famine. Like many artists featured in Manifesto, Jaar advocates for the power of art to offer a unique perspective on the major issues that we face, to inspire a better understanding of different worldviews, and to ultimately effect change.

7:50 pm EDT | Zoom broadcast opens
8–9 pm EDT | Alfredo Jaar in conversation with Stéphane Aquin 

CART (real-time captioning) will be provided for this program. If you have any questions about accessibility for this program, please email

This virtual event is part of Talking to Our Time, the Hirshhorn’s online series of free, live artist talks featuring a diverse group of artists and collectives. View all events! The project is also in conjunction with #HirshhornInsideOut, the Museum’s initiative to bring art into your home.