Introduction to Queer Art @ Bethnal Green Working Men's Club, London [1 June]

Introduction to Queer Art

19:00 - 21:00

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Bethnal Green Working Men's Club
42-46 Pollard Row / Bethnal Green, E2 6NB London, United Kingdom
'Maybe it’s too late to respond to ‘queer’ – or maybe it’s just in time. Queer is empowering, offensive, visible, academic, passé, over, urgent, overused, everything, irrelevant, empty, hurtful, hateful, possible, broad, narrow, nothing, futurity, hope, not enough, too much, just right.' – Catherine Lord

What exactly do we mean by queer art? Is it art made by gay, lesbian and transgender artists? Or is it work that challenges those labels and political agendas? Does queer art begin in the 1980s with AIDS activist artists’ groups like Gran Fury or should artists from the 19th, 18th and 17th centuries be included?

This talk will provide a clear, accessible guide to the relationship between art and queer politics looking at the history, key ideas, exhibitions and artists. The talk will draw upon examples of historical painters such as Helena Gluckstein, Marsden Hartley and Thomas Eakins, the cross over with feminist and gay liberation in the 1960s and 70s, through the AIDS crisis and on to the present day and cover questions of identity, activism, representation and social assimilation. Focus will be given to artists as diverse as Robert Mapplethorpe, Bupen Kakhar, James Richards and Jacolby Satterwhite, and across a range of media from painting to photography, video, performance and post-internet art.

Frieze associate editor Paul Clinton has spoken widely on art and queer politics, including at Royal College of Art, Goldsmiths College, Financial Times Live, Whitechapel Gallery, Tate Modern and many other venues. His recent articles on the subject include Queer Time and Place’, ‘Picture Piece: when Eve Sedgwick met Terry Richardson’ and ‘One Man Protest’ all available to read on

Image Carlos Motta, Deviations to Love #1, 2013, digital projection, dimensions variable. Courtesy: Galeria Filomena Soares, Lisbon, Instituto de Visión, Bogotá, and Mor.Charpentier Galerie, Paris
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