Night Fever: New York Disco 1977–1979, The Bill Bernstein Photographs explores the sexually and socially radical multiculturalism embraced by the New York disco clubs of the late ‘70s.
The exhibition assembles 40 photographs from Bill Bernstein, taken from 1977 to 1979, accompanied by audio interviews, in an immersive installation that invites viewers to experience the freedom and intoxication of the disco era. Highlighted clubs include: GG’s Barnum Room, Le Clique, Xenon, Studio 54, Ice Palace, Crisco Disco, Paradise Garage, Electric Circus, The Fun House, and Hurrah. The unique context of these clubs allowed for unprecedented interaction between groups — straights danced with gays, whites with blacks and Latinos, young with old, and rich with poor. By publicly embracing alternate and previously hidden identities, these pioneers created revolutionary boundary-crossing communities of possibility and joy, paving the way for a future culture of inclusivity.
Night Fever is an immersive experience, designed as a pop-up disco complete with an original Richard Long Audio System (infamously associated with clubs like Studio 54 and Paradise Garage) along with guest appearances by disco-era DJs. A fully operating bar will offer a retro ‘70s cocktail menu.
The exhibition is free to the public and accessible without Museum admission.