In 2017 there has been a rise in appraisal for art made by the LGBTQ community. Something that was once shunned in the past has been taken into the spotlight. As a group that has received a lot of hatred and criticism their artwork vibrantly expresses frustration and hardship faced in the LGBTQ community. Here are a few accomplishments for LGBTQ artists in the year of 2017.
David Hockney, an 80 year old British gay man had his art displayed at Tate Modern in Britain in 2017. Through his art he paints and portrays retrospective works showing his full and vibrant life. From paintings of naked men in swimming pools to yorkshire landscapes his technique and use of bright colors gives a very 60’s vibe. His desires for men seep through every stroke. His first works to sell in 1963 after he attended the Royal College of Art, were considered a criminal offense at the time. Overcoming the obstacles of being a gay man growing up he has become a very successful artist with a lucrative 60 year career with over 250 works.
In the midst of a treacherous political climate of 2017, Juliana Huxtable’s art has delved into a world of anti-trump activism, transgender activism, and exploration of sexual identity. Their latest gallery “A Split During Laughter at the Rally” at Reena Spaulings in New York City, is compiled of poster sized prints mounted on metal sheets with fridge magnets on them. The pieces explore conspiracy theories against mainstream media that is controlling the public at large. Mirroring propaganda posters, it claims that cell phones enslave your minds and destroy one’s higher consciousness. Their gallery present post truth politics specifically with the piece “War on Proof” that states “10,000 links and I have yet to prove my point” ruminating that the solution for struggles aren’t found in facts. Their work encompasses intersectional struggles of gender fluidity, transexualism, and being a minority in America.
The Leslie-Lohman Museum of gay and Lesbian museum has reopened it’s door after an expansion of 2,000 square feet while taking over a neighboring building. The museum was founded by Frederic Fritz Lohman and Charles W. Wesley in 1969. It started off as a small collection of art that they turned into a commercial gallery. During the height of the aids pandemic in the 80’s they were forced to closed their doors to the public. They applied for non-profit status in 1987 but The Internal Revenue Service disapproved of the word “gay” in the title and refuse to grant them non-profit status until 1990. Now located at 26 Wooster St. in SoHo it is home to a wide selection of gay and lesbian art. They also announced in 2017 that their Hunter O’ Hanian Diversity Art Fund, which supports non- cisgender white male art has raised over 40,000 since its creation in the summer of 2016. The museum is a huge support for the Gay and Lesbian community by providing a large platform for their art and individuality.
As a group that has so often been misunderstood, is currently being appreciated for their art because of their its impeccable style and technique.