Stories told by members of Leeds’s LGBT*Q community have taken centre stage in a new exhibtion at Leeds City Museum.
The museum’s new Leeds Queer Stories display presents local LGBT*Q (LGBT*Q: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans* and Queer) history through the medium of artwork, films, photographs, everyday objects such as clothing and flyers, as well as testimonies gathered from local people over the years.
The display has been co-curated with LGBT*Q communities as part of a bigger intergenerational project in partnership with local organisations and community groups, aiming to explore a variety of themes.
These range from the arts and culture, health and wellbeing, identity and the struggle for LGBT*Q equality.
One particular feature that is certain to captivate audiences is a short contemporary dance film by Jamie Fletcher entitled ‘Queer as in Queer’, which has been commissioned for the display.
The film focuses on various locations in Leeds that hold a particular historical significance for LGBT*Q communities and uncovers stories pertinent to these places.
Councillor Judith Blake, Leader of Council and Executive Member for Economy and Culture said:
“The arrival of Leeds Queer Stories is a great addition to Leeds City Museum, giving people the chance to learn about local history and reflect on the difficulties of the past compared with the progressive society we have today.
“This display provides LGBT*Q communities with a platform to broadcast the historical evolution of their culture, and will improve the positive inter-cultural relationships already established in Leeds.
“It is important that we continue to develop our understanding and appreciation of all members of our community, and this exhibition will give visitors a new perspective to consider.”
Leeds Queer Stories is part of the Arts Council England funded project run by Leeds Museums and Galleries, and follows the recently successful Leeds Art Gallery queer cultural project ‘PoMoGaze’, hoping to engage with new audiences. (http://www.leeds.gov.uk/museumsandgalleries/Pages/leedsartgallery/PomoGaze.aspx).
Jude Woods, Lead Curator for the display added:
“Leeds Queer Stories is one amongst many LGBT*Q history projects gaining ground all over the country.
“Leeds has played a key role in the story of LGBT*Q equality. The city had the first Trans* conference in 1974, it was a location of radical lesbian feminist activism in the 1980s and had the first civil partnership in 2005. LGBT*Q communities have made significant contributions to the city’s rich history of alternative cultures.”
The display will run until May 2016. The celebratory launch event is on Saturday November 28 from 12pm until 4pm and will feature Queer storytelling, dancing and music. It is a family friendly event, and everyone is welcome to come along.
For media enquiries, please contact:
Leeds City Council Press Office
Tel: 0113 395 0244