Since the 1970s, Nan Goldin’s photographs have focused on people who live outside of established gender constructions. Her celebrated, diaristic Ballad of Sexual Dependency (1979–1986) captures deeply intimate scenes of love, violence, and sex, all part of the artist’s own lived experience. Since the 1990s, she has expanded to installations that involve moving pictures, narrative scores, and voiceovers. Centering on themes of love, gender, sexuality, and social precarity, Goldin’s work captures life at its most unvarnished and true. Sirens (2019–2020) was conceived as an homage to Donyale Luna, often cited as the first Black supermodel, who died from a heroin overdose in 1979. Titled for the creatures of Greek mythology whose songs draw sailors to their deaths on rocky island shores, Sirens appropriates footage from thirty films – including 1969’s Satyricon; works by Kenneth Anger, Lynne Ramsay, Henri-Georges Clouzot and Federico Fellini; Andy Warhol’s “Screen Tests” of Luna; and footage from a 1988 London rave – to associate the beauty of the female body with the sensuality and ecstasy of a drug high. While Goldin’s film, scored by composer Mica Levi, presents a glamorous and romantic rendition of the pleasure of being high, its title alludes to the possible peril of opiate use and the difficulty of escaping its grasp.