26.06 - 01.12.2015
 Schwules Museum*, Berlin, DE

An exhibition presented by the Deutsches Historisches Museum and the Schwules Museum*, jointly funded by the Kulturstiftung des Bundes and the Kulturstiftung der Länder

With the exhibition “Homosexuality_ies”, the Schwules Museum* and the Deutsches Historisches Museum present 
the first comprehensive show on the history, politics and culture of homosexuality. Covering a total area of 1600 square meters, the show thematizes society's handling of homosexuality in light of social, juridical and scientific repression. 
It follows the gradual process of emancipation from the late 18th century into the present. Jointly funded by the Kulturstiftung des Bundes and the Kulturstiftung der Länder, “Homosexuality_ies” will be on view at the Deutsches Historisches Museum and the Schwules Museum* simultaneously from 26 June to 1 December 2015. Given the ongoing, worldwide discourse on equal rights for homosexuals, both institutions see this exhibition as an act that positions a socially and politically current topic in the middle of society. 

The exhibition at the DHM focuses on historical developments in society, politics, art, law and science since the " discovery " of homosexuality mid-19th century. Via a selection of artistic positions, the exhibition part of the Schwules Museum* explores the present and raises questions as to the future of gender codes and sexualities.

Until now, the history and culture of homosexual people have been conferred to the shadows of public memory. The exhibition “Homosexuality_ies” presents an impressive abundance of materials, formats and media that offer a broad public insight into the multi-faceted and nuanced history. It acknowledges the cultural-historical achievement of homosexual emancipation, which has transformed society's understanding of gender identity. Homosexual cultures and approaches to life have sharpened awareness of the limitations of traditional gender codes and demanded recognition for the diversity of alternative models of living. “Homosexuality_ies” strikes out the usual perception that equates homosexuals with gay men, emphasizing the vital roles lesbian activists have played in all these developments. 

The show traces the history of homosexuality_ies in ten chapters, concluding with the present. It demonstrates how same-sex sexuality and divergent gender identities have been criminalized through legislation, pathologized in medicine and excluded from society. Exhibits include a copy of the first secular criminal provisions effective for the entire German territory, the “Constitutio Criminalis Carolina” from the mid-16th century which, drawing on religious traditions, punishes sexual acts “against nature” between women and men alike with “death by fire”. A letter handwritten by the author Karl Maria Kertbeny in 1868 will also be on view. That letter contains the first use of the terms homosexual and heterosexual. Since science began concerning itself with sexuality, homosexuality designated a divergence from the “normal”. The exhibition thus illustrates the efforts to diagnose and “cure” sexual and gender “deviations” in medicine and psychology. As a counterpoint, models by researchers including Karl Heinrich Ulrichs, Magnus Hirschfeld and Judith Butler represent efforts past and present to establish understanding for sexual and gender diversity. 

A core section of the exhibition focuses on the lesbian and gay movement, particularly after the legal liberalization that occurred over the course of the 1960s. This section features a plethora of exhibits including flyers, press materials, posters, photographs, videos and objects – such as a preserved original educational brochure from 1901 by the very first homosexual civil rights association, the “Scientific-Humanitarian Committee”. Other exhibits include the script from “Coming Out” (1989), the first and last official film on homosexuality in East Germany, and footage of the “Muff Mobile” at Christopher Street Day 1998 in Berlin. 

In closing, “Homosexuality_ies” aims to present contemporary debates and raise questions as to the future of gender codes and sexualities. It shows how new coalitions of trans*, inter* and queer-feminist protagonists are propelling the recognition of sexual and gender diversity in society right now. Aside from historical developments, the exhibition displays a wide range of subjective experiences: One chapter is dedicated to very personal “Coming Out” stories. Another highlights the cross-over from the personal to the political, where codes in clothes, style and manner are exhibited, which transformed over time from signs used to identify oneself to like-minded fellows into offensive tactical manifestations in public. 

A selection of works by contemporary international artists comment on the exhibition's themes in a variety of ways. Artists include Monica Bonvicini, Louise Bourgeois, Heather Cassils, Michael Elmgreen & Ingar Dragset, Nicole Eisenman, Katarzyna Kozyra, Tamara de Lempicka, Lee Lozano, Jeanne Mammen, Zanele Muholi, Henrik Olesen, Sturtevant, Sam Taylor-Johnson and Andy Warhol.

The majority of the exhibits originate from private initiatives that have conferred their collections to archives such as the lesbian archive Spinnboden, the feminist archives FFBIZ and Grauzone, Cologne's Frauenmediaturm and the Archive at the Schwules Museum*. In that respect, this show funded substantially by the Kulturstiftung des Bundes and the Kulturstiftung der Länder raises a fundamental question regarding how the topic of “Homosexuality_ies” can be represented and presented properly in museums and archives. 

 The exhibition has been curated by Dr. Birgit Bosold, Dr. Dorothée Brill and Detlef Weitz, with research contributed by Dr. Sarah Bornhorst, Noemi Molitor and Kristine Schmidt. 
- - - 

 Roberta Orlando will take part in Homosexuality_ies.
A special work. Just honored.
 More info soon.

Info about the picture:
Advertisement: Homage to Benglis, part the larger body of work CUTS: A Traditional Sculpture
Photo credits: Heather Cassils and Robin Black
Image courtesy of Heather Cassils and Ronald Feldman Fine Arts
© Heather Cassils and Robin Black 2011



FIRST MILE Conference

Berlin, DE

 FIRST MILE supports 20 LGBTI [LesbiansGaysBisexualsTrans*Intersex*] activists from 
various global change projects. We bring them together with highly influential leaders for 
an exchange around creating relevant impact and potential mentorship.

A day of engaging dialogue, enthralling encounters, cooperative problem-solving and 
improving as a change maker.

Roberta Orlando will take part in FIRST MILE.

Image by FIRST MILE.




FIRST MILE activists

 FIRST MILE supports 20 LGBTI [LesbiansGaysBisexualsTrans*Intersex*] activists from various global change projects. We bring them together with highly influential leaders for an exchange around creating relevant impact and potential mentorship. A campaign is designed to create a worldwide movement of awareness for their work.

Who are we?

We are Tizia & Stuart from the Uhlala company working on projects which pursue equal opportunity for the LGBTI community in society. The company has been doing this for six years, driven by the vision of a diverse world in which you can live freely - without fear. Find out more about us and all our projects here: www.the-activists.com/about-us.

What is this campaign about?

There are many activists around the world doing amazing work, taking a stand for equality and acceptance. As they deserve an alliance we have created a new platform for you to show your care and support for their cause:
We are organizing a non-profit event called FIRST MILE on June, 11th to which we invited 20 LGBTI activists from all around the world to join us here in Berlin, Germany. We connect them with business leaders to exchange ideas, 
learn from one another and generate a new, diverse and strong network of change agents.

Beyond FIRST MILE, these activists will benefit from further support - each of them adds a unique value to the LGBTI community and society at large through their work - they all fight for human rights and have impressive personalities. 
To keep up their amazing work, they count on all of us to continue paying attention to 
their projects and to generate a solid financial base.

What can you do?

That’s the very reason why we have also created a crowd-funding Indiegogo campaign as a parallel stream. Be one of hundreds of people who show support by raising 20,000 Euros for the activists projects - 
aiming at 1,000€ for each participant. Contribute to this fund!

And here is yet another must-use opportunity to help spread the word: share your thoughts and 
make your network aware using the hashtag #IAmAnActivist.

It's about making a difference - no matter what role you’re in.


Support the FIRST MILE campaign on Indiegogo!