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LSE Library’s spring exhibition Glad to be gay: the struggle for legal equality draws on the unique Hall-Carpenter Archives and the Women’s Library collection to mark the 50th anniversary of a pivotal piece of legislation: the 1967 Sexual Offences Act.
Before that, homosexuality was a criminal offence. With the passing of the Sexual Offences Act, homosexuality in private was decriminalised, but genuine parity still was not achieved. The struggle for legal equality continued and has only made progress by the sustained efforts of committed activists.
This exhibition follows the LGBT story from the ‘hidden’ years when homosexuality was a taboo subject, to the passing of the Sexual Offences Act in 1967 and the emergence of gay liberation in the 1970s when the first Gay Liberation Front meeting was held at LSE in October 1970.
The exhibition looks at the campaigns to lower the age of consent for gay men to 16 (only achieved in 2001), to repealing section 28 which prevented ‘promotion’ of homosexuality in schools (only achieved in 2003) and for legal recognition of trans people and civil partnerships in 2004.
Female Executioner is the first solo exhibition at Gasworks, London by Glasgow-based artist Jamie Crewe.
Comprising newly commissioned video, sculpture, print, and text-based works, the exhibition focuses on French writer Rachilde’s Monsieur Venus: A Materialist Novel. Exploring what is at stake in historical reclamation, Female Executioner investigates what happens when a queer, transfeminine artist tries to touch, reflect on, or rehabilitate an historical work of fiction which seems to offer them ancestry.
Supported by the Freelands Foundation. With thanks to Transmission gallery, Glasgow.
This exhibition will mark the 50th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality. It will focus on Benjamin Britten and his partner, the tenor Peter Pears, at a time when their relationship was illegal. Key works highlighting their relationship will be featured along with the wider cultural, political and legal situation faced by gay men in the 1950s.
Andrew Fekete arrived at the University of Liverpool in September 1972 to pursue his studies in Architecture. Just fourteen years later he would be dead, his life tragically cut short by an AIDS-related illness. Yet during these few brief years, he embarked on a remarkable voyage of self-discovery through his prolific painting and writing. Out of Time invites you to join Andrew Fekete on this journey through his paintings, drawings and diaries, starting with his formative years in Liverpool and ending with his final, unfinished image.
The annual Loudest Whispers exhibitions are unique in London’s art exhibition art culture and attract an eclectic mix of professional and self taught outsider artists. The theme ‘Citizenship and the Law’ has inspired an installation “38 Green Carnations “by Peter Herbert with Fionn Wilson that reflects on the incarceration of Oscar Wilde in Reading Gaol in 1895. Artists returning with new work include Simon Croft, Richard Field, Iggy Miranda, Jaime Freestone, John William, Sheridan Tandy, Simon Richardson, Lucy Martin, Edward Mendelsohn, Titus Davies and Ann Froggatt. The exhibition includes a major tribute to the late South African abstract painter Bev Meyers.
The exhibition has been produced to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the 1967 Sexual Offences Act that began the decriminalisation of homosexuality. The project re-purposes pictures from the South East Archive of Seaside Photography taken during the period of time when homosexuality was illegal and reframes them to fabricate forgotten stories. These new images point toward lives that could not lived in the open; stories that can only be imagined, lost to history. Obscured and beyond focus, these re-worked photographs serve as a memorial and tribute to the many lives and loves lived in secret, behind closed doors.
‘He was wandering around topless, clearly drug-f*cked, asking random guys to have sex. I took his hand and he grabbed me urgently, blue eyes intent and blazing.’
The Chemsex Monologues are the untold stories of the men and women adrift in London’s chill-out scene. Porn stars, fag hags and sexual health workers collide on the streets of Soho in a whirling frenzy of pleasure and pain.
From the hard-ons to the heartbreak, Patrick Cash’s play is a frank, funny and full frontal insight into one of the twenty-first century’s most surprising and controversial gay subcultures.
★★★★★ – ‘Essential Viewing’ Gay Times
★★★★★ – ‘A Superb Piece of Writing’ London Theatre 1
★★★★★ – ‘Engrossing, Thought Provoking, Important and Powerful’ Act One
‘This is a vital show’ Boyz Magazine
‘Gold Standard’ QX Magazine
Harry Crawford (otherwise known as Eugenia Falleni) stands trial for the murder of his wife. The trial is a farce: the case is filled with false witnesses and Harry’s gender dysphoria is blasted across the newspapers. As the trial continues, Harry’s tragic life-story comes to light.
A thrilling true-crime drama, Christopher Bryant’s multi-award-nominated play THE MUTANT MAN puts Transgender themes centre stage, while tracing a stomach churning narrative rooted in history.
Supported by the Arch & Bruce Brown Foundation, funding LGBT positive arts projects
Marlene Dietrich has been a favourite gay icon for both men and women over several generations. In this highly-praised show, Terry Sanderson explores her extraordinary life and career. From her start in the ‘divinely decadent’ cabarets of Weimar Berlin, where she enthusiastically embraced the liberated sexual attitudes of the time, to superstardom in Hollywood and a stunning career on the concert stage. Along the way she became a medal-winning war hero, abandoning her native Germany in order to fight her own war against the Nazis.
We’ll have generous clips from her campest movies, rare archive film of her war exploits and a showing, in full on a big screen, of her fabulous one-woman show – which is a once-seen never forgotten experience.
Marlene never made a secret of her sexual preferences and her heroic story is a perfect Pride treat.
On the 50th anniversary of the day the Sexual Offences Bill gained royal assent and became an Act of Parliament, Stephen Bourne presents an illustrated talk followed by a Q&A about some of the gay men who are featured in his latest book Fighting Proud (I B Tauris, £17.99), a history of the contribution gay men in Britain made during the World Wars. These include Lord Kitchener, Battle of Britain hero Ian Gleed, writer Hector Bolitho, Police Constable Harry Daley, Noel Coward and bandleader Ken “Snakehips” Johnson.
Stephen Bourne is a writer and historian. An expert on Black and LGBT British history, he has written for BBC History Magazine, History Today and has written over 40 entries on prominent black Britons for the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. He is the author of Black Poppies (History Press, 2013), a history of the contribution of black men and women to the First World War and his forthcoming book Fighting Proud will be published in July 2017 by I. B. Tauris. He is the winner of the Southwark Arts Form Award for Literature. In 2017 he was awarded an Honorary Fellowship from London South Bank University for his contribution to diversity
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