New-York Historical commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising and the dawn of the gay liberation movement with two new exhibitions and a special installation.
Letting Loose and Fighting Back: LGBTQ Nightlife Before and After Stonewall explores the history of LGBTQ bars, clubs, and nightlife in New York City during the second half of the 20th century. The exhibition highlights the ways in which nightlife—though subjected to policing, unfavorable public policies, and Mafia control—has been critical to finding identity, building community, developing political awareness, and fostering genres of creative expression that have influenced popular culture worldwide.
Curated by the Lesbian Herstory Archives Graphic Committee, By the Force of Our Presence: Highlights from the Lesbian Herstory Archives examines lesbian lives both pre- and post-Stonewall, highlighting institution-building, organization, and networking within the LGBTQ movement with a focus on the contributions of lesbians and queer women.
A special graphic installation, Say It Loud, Out and Proud: Fifty Years of Pride, uses imagery from five decades of New York City Pride marches to animate a timeline of significant moments in national and New York LGBTQ history, illustrating the ways in which the fight for equal rights for LGBTQ citizens is constant and ongoing.
Stonewall 50 at New-York Historical Society is collaboratively curated by Assistant Curator of Material Culture Rebecca Klassen, the Center for Women’ s History, and New-York Historical’s Education Department.
Exhibitions at New-York Historical are made possible by Dr. Agnes Hsu-Tang and Oscar Tang, the Saunders Trust for American History, the Seymour Neuman Endowed Fund, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. WNET is the media sponsor.