Monday, November 10, 2008

LGBTQ histories at the V&A

Clementina and Isabella Grace by Viscountess Clementina Hawarden © V&A
As part of a new programme the V&A is seeking to unearth previously hidden LGBTQ histories in its collections, researching the objects and their histories that surround them. Equally, these investigations look at the ways in which visitors themselves understand and make sense of these objects on the basis of their own identities and lived experience.

Oliver Winchester, Research Assistant - Postmodernism: Design 1970-90, said: "This is an exciting and complex task that is fraught with political, moral and personal challenges. Perhaps the most complex question stems from the inherent contradiction that lies at the centre of the gay liberation movement and its legacy – the desire to eradicate discrimination whilst enshrining difference. Any investigation into this area is charged and throws up many questions and provides only partial answers. We look forward to progressing through future projects and events."

For more details please see or email Oliver at

Forthcoming events

Write Queer London
17 November 2008
What does your queer London look like? And how does it compare with the queer London of yesteryear? Write Queer London is looking for stories, non-fiction, and poems about queer London, past, present and future. Competition entrants are invited to get their creative juices flowing with a warm up workshop focusing on LGBTQ objects in the V&A collections.
For more information and to enter the competition see

World AIDS Day
1 December 2008
Seminar Room 3
The 20th World AIDS Day takes place this year. To mark the occasion the V&A will host a lunchtime talk investigating the cultural impact of the virus. Join curators as they discuss the significance and meanings behind the AIDS quilt as a collective expression of grief and discuss examples of graphic design prompted by political and educational fallout of AIDS.
Free event, no ticket required

2009 events to be announced shortly

Image: Clementina and Isabella Grace, 5 Princes Gardens
by Viscountess Clementina Hawarden
ca.1863-64. Albumen print.
© V&A

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