Home / CULTURE / Grand Opening of new GLBT history show “Queer Past Becomes Present” May 15

Grand Opening of new GLBT history show “Queer Past Becomes Present” May 15

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Exterior of the GLBT History Museum; photo credit Daniel Nicoletta:

“Queer Past Becomes Present” Grand Opening May 15
First show in newly remodeled GLBT History Museum?
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San Francisco –?The grand opening of “Queer Past Becomes Present,” the first exhibition in the newly remodeled Main Gallery of the GLBT History Museum, will happen on Thursday evening, May 15, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. ? The event will be free and open to the public.

The GLBT History Museum is the first full-scale, stand-alone museum of its kind in the United States.

The topics included in the exhibition are:

Queer Youth: Out and Active
“Queer Youth” traces the activism of San Francisco Bay Area LGBTQQ youth 25 and under from the 1970s to the present.

The Lesbians of The Ladder: Courage Under Attack
In 1955 a small group — many of them women of color – courageously founded the Daughters of Bilitis, a social club for lesbians. The organization’s publication, the Ladder, quickly became a lifeline for women across the country struggling to come out in a virulently homophobic society.

The Assassination of Supervisor Harvey Milk
This section looks at one of the most horrific events in queer history, the assassination of activist and San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk, and includes related artifacts, photographs and an excerpt from Milk’s political will.

Jos? Sarria: Activist and Entertainer
Costumes, artifacts, and ephemera document the life of Jos? Sarria, “The Nightingale of Montgomery Street,” from his days waiting tables and performing at the Black Cat Caf? through his historic run as the first openly gay candidate for public office in the United States.

Constructing Jiro Onuma: Putting the Pieces Together
“Constructing Jiro Onuma” details how history is a dynamic process involving continuous excavation and discovery through the personal collection of Japanese immigrant Jiro Onuma. His collection offers the only known visual documentation of same-sex intimacy in the Japanese American incarceration camps.

Fighting for Our Lives: Four Organizations Respond to AIDS
A look at four pioneering Bay Area organizations that fought for a greater response to the HIV/AIDS pandemic: People with AIDS-SF, the ARC/AIDS Vigil, the National Task Force for AIDS Prevention and WORLD (Women Organized in Response to Life-threatening Diseases).

Gayborhoods: Lost Queer Landscapes
Using unique artifacts and images, this exhibit recaptures the clubs, bars, restaurants, and other venues of three vibrant queer communities – North Beach, the Tenderloin, and the Valencia Street corridor – now all merely memories.

History is Now: The Dragon Fruit Project
“History is Now” showcases an intergenerational historical preservation project within the queer Asian Pacific Islander community.

The lead curators of the new exhibition are Dr. Amy Sueyoshi, author of Queer Compulsions and Associate Dean of the College of Ethnic Studies at San Francisco State University; and Jim Van Buskirk, coauthor of Gay By the Bay. Associate curators include David A. Reichard, Professor of History & Legal Studies at California State University Monterey Bay; Darren Arquero, a Ph.D. student in Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, and Research Fellow at the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society; Juliet Demeter, an archival consultant; and Paul Boneberg, Executive Director of the GLBT Historical Society.

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ABOUT THE GLBT HISTORY MUSEUM

The GLBT History Museum is located at 4127 18th St. in San Francisco’s Castro District. Open since January 2011, it presents long-term exhibitions in its Main Gallery, and smaller changing exhibitions in its Front Gallery and Community Gallery spaces. The museum also hosts lectures, films and other special events.

The museum is a project of the GLBT Historical Society, a research center and archives that collects, preserves and interprets the history of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people and the communities that support them. Founded in 1985, the society maintains one of the world’s largest collections of GLBT historical materials; it is often referred to as San Francisco’s “queer Smithsonian.”

For more information, and for a list of other upcoming exhibitions and events, visit www.glbthistory.org.

Jos? Sarria

The “Queer Past Becomes Present” exhibition includes materials documenting the life of Jos? Sarria. Shown here is a WWII-era photograph of Sarria in military uniform:

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Artist’s rendering of the entrance to the remodeled Main Gallery of the GLBT History Museum: