Back in 2021, the LGBTQ+ Positive Voices online exhibition, was launched as a celebration of LGBTQ+ people’s positive experiences, lives and perspectives.
The project was organised by Ash Green (they/them) during the pandemic, and it was partly inspired by their experience of visiting LGBTQ+ exhibitions (including the Museum of Transology, and The Transworkers Photography Exhibition), and seeing others like them represented in those exhibitions. At the same time, some of the personal stories shared alongside items within those exhibitions made Ash feel as if they had a positive future as a trans/gender non-conforming bisexual person. When Ash put out a call for contributions to LGBTQ+ Positive Voices the intention was to give other LGBTQ+ people a space to celebrate their own stories, and a space that allows visitors to experience creative works that are a positive reflection of being an LGBTQ+ person. The exhibition includes videos, dance performance, paintings, digital artworks, audio pieces and games, representing a broad spectrum of sexual and gender identities from 26 artists and creative contributors from around the world. Each exhibition page includes personal stories in the creator’s words alongside the exhibition piece.
As a follow up to this online project, Ash Green is running a series of workshops with Goldsmiths Library Special Collections & Archives (SCA) in 2023 with the same goal in mind – to support Goldsmiths LGBTQ+ / queer community (& beyond Goldsmiths) to capture and share their positive experiences and stories. We also want to use the opportunity to highlight this positive representation using Goldsmiths SCA materials as a springboard. This could be in the form of:
- creating individual pieces of art or creative responses to pieces in the collections or
- selecting items from the collections and commenting on how they feel it is a positive representation of LGBTQ+ lives.
… but doesn’t have to be limited to these suggestions only.
The project will culminate in a physical exhibition in 2024, as well as including appropriate pieces created throughout the project in the LGBTQ+ Positive Voices online exhibition.
And by creating new materials focused on the SCA collections, these pieces and their creators could also become a part of Goldsmiths University Special Collections & Archives.
We want to encourage anyone in the LGBTQ+ community to participate, regardless of whether they see themselves as an artist/creative person, or not. If you are an LGBTQ+ person and have a “positive voice” to share, then you are the perfect participant.
So, we are inviting members of the Goldsmiths LGBTQ+ community to come along to the project launch event (16th February, 2023), which will focus on the background and plans for the project. Event attendees will also be able to explore some of the Goldsmiths Special Collections & Archives and start thinking about (and even create) a contribution for the exhibition if they wish to.
Follow up events (in spring and summer 2023) will have a similar focus to this event and attendees of the launch event can attend as many as they wish to.
Book to attend the upcoming event here.
If you’d like more information about the project, including support for finding and accessing Goldsmiths Special Collections & Archives materials outside of the workshops, please contact special.collections (@gold.ac.uk)