The Boomer List

David LaChapelle on Being Gay in the 1970s and 80s

Starting in seventh grade, artist David LaChapelle (b. 1963) was so bullied for being gay that he dropped out of school by ninth grade. He moved to New York City, where being gay was accepted. He recalls there was even social cache to being bisexual, but when AIDS broke out “it changed everything and suddenly everything became very segregated.”

American Masters: The Boomer List, premiering nationwide Tuesday, September 23, 9-10:30 p.m. on PBS (check local listings), tells the story of this influential generation through the lives of 19 iconic boomers—one born each year of the baby boom.