Lx artista y educadorx Catalina Schliebener nos guiará en un recorrido virtual que destaca algunas de las obras de nuestra exposición actual Laura Aguilar: Show and Tell. Este programa digital de una hora invita a visitantes de todas las edades a participar en un debate interactivo sobre las obras expuestas. El The New York Times escribió recientemente sobre Laura y la exposición:
“Hoy en día, cuando se reconoce y se valora lo queer en sus múltiples significados, incluida su encarnación en el término Latinx de género neutro, ella se erige como una figura que estaba dando forma a un futuro que es nuestro presente ".
Laura Aguilar: Show and Tell es la primera retrospectiva integral de la fotógrafa Laura Aguilar (1959-2018) que reúne más de 70 obras producidas a lo largo de tres décadas. A través de fotografías y videos que son frecuentemente políticos y personales, y que atraviesan géneros de arte performativo, feminista y queer, Aguilar ofrece representaciones sinceras de sí misma, sus amigxs y familiares, y las comunidades LGBTQ+ y Latinx de las que formaba parte. La exposición cuenta la historia de la artista que durante la mayor parte de su vida luchó por comunicarse con palabras, pero que irónicamente, emergió como una voz poderosa para numerosos y diversos grupos marginados.
Catalina Schliebeneres artistx y educadorx. Puedes ver su trabajo en persona en el Museo en julio como parte de nuestra próxima exposición Omniscient. Mientras tanto, recientemente elle compartió algunas reflexiones con nosotros sobre la programación de Leslie-Lohman en español.
Mientras que en el museo Leslie-Lohman estamos haciendo que nuestra programación y contenido sean más accesibles para los visitantes que no hablan inglés, ¿cuáles son algunos de tus objetivos como artistx-educadorx?
Siempre estoy pensando, ¿cómo sería para lxs niñxs hispanohablantes crecer con contenido queer que exista en su propio idioma? ¿Cómo podemos abordar el desafío en torno al hecho de que en español cada objeto tiene un género? ¿Cómo podemos hablar sobre cómo el género está incrustado en casi cada palabra en nuestro idioma? Estas conversaciones y cambios ya están sucediendo, las personas, al menos en algunas de las comunidades en que participó, están haciendo el esfuerzo de hablar con lenguaje inclusivo usando la “e” o “x”, la gente está cambiando la forma en que habla, pero ¿cómo llegar más lejos? ¿cómo hacemos eso con otras comunidades, en otros lugares y en espacios como el museo? En inglés, este cambio ha estado sucediendo desde hace un tiempo y hay diferentes desafíos, pero esto cambia en otros contextos, idiomas y culturas. En español, es un cambio que recién está comenzando.
¿Qué es lo que más te emociona de enseñar en español?
En primer lugar, el español es mi lengua materna, por lo que siendo un poco egoísta de algún modo es mucho más intuitivo para mi facilitar conversaciones y workshops en español. Pero otro motivo más relevante es que creo que es muy importante que este contenido exista y sea accesible en español. No se trata solo de traducir el contenido, también se trata de encontrar las palabras en español para poder comunicar algunas de las ideas que surgen en las obras que analizamos, por ejemplo, la incorporación de lenguaje inclusivo y términos y conceptos propios de la comunidad queer. ¿Cómo traducir y adaptar algunos conceptos que son completamente diferentes en las culturas de habla hispana y en el propio español? Hay tantas personas en la ciudad de Nueva York que crecieron hablando español como primer o segundo idioma, que hacer este proceso a través del idioma es fundamental para su experiencia.
¿Por qué es importante para nosotros ofrecer esta programación como museo?
Es sumamente importante, solo poder experimentar el museo y discutir estas ideas sin sentirse cohibido o excluido o pensar constantemente, "¿Cómo está mi inglés?" sería una experiencia muy valiosa. Mi esperanza es construir un espacio donde podamos tener una conversación realmente libre de prejuicios sobre las obras y el museo con las personas que nos visiten.
Join our Second Tuesdays tour of Laura Aguilar: Show and Tell, en Español
Join Leslie-Lohman Teaching-Artist Catalina Schliebener for a virtual tour highlighting works from our current exhibition Laura Aguilar: Show and Tell. This one-hour digital program invites visitors of all ages to participate in active discussion around the works on view. The New York Times recently wrote of Laura, and the exhibition,
“Today, when queerness in its many layered meanings, including its embodiment in the gender-neutral term Latinx, is acknowledged and valorized, she stands as a figure who was shaping a future that is our present.”
Laura Aguilar: Show and Tell is the first comprehensive retrospective of photographer Laura Aguilar (1959-2018) assembling more than 70 works produced over three decades. Through photographs and videos that are frequently political as well as personal, and which traverse performative, feminist, and queer art genres, Aguilar offers candid portrayals of herself, her friends and family, and LGBTQ+ and Latinx communities. The exhibition tells the story of the artist who for most of her life struggled to communicate with words, yet ironically emerged as a powerful voice for numerous and diverse marginalized groups.
Catalina Schliebeneris an artist and educator. You can check their work out in person at the Museum in July as part of our upcoming exhibition, Omniscient. In the meantime, they recently shared some thoughts with us on Leslie-Lohman en Español.
As the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art makes our programming and content more accessible to visitors who are non-English speakers, what are some of your goals as a teaching-artist?
I’m always thinking, what would it be like for Spanish-speaking kids to grow up with queer content that exists in their own language. How can we address these challenges around the fact that in Spanish every single object has a gender? How can we talk about the gender embedded in the language? Those conversations and changes are already happening. People, at least in my communities, are making the effort to speak with more inclusive language like using “e” or “x.” People are changing the way they're talking, but how to go farther? How do we do that with more people in more spaces, and in spaces like the Museum? In English, it's been happening for a while and there are different challenges — the language and the cultures where it’s spoken are so different. In Spanish, this conversation is just starting.
What excites you most about teaching in Spanish?
First, Spanish is my native language, so it's more intuitive for me to facilitate in Spanish. But that’s more of a selfish reason! Another reason is that I think it’s really important that this content is accessible in Spanish. For me, the issue is not only one of translation--it’s about finding the “right” words in Spanish to communicate some of the ideas present in her work. Inclusive language is key here. How can we translate and adapt some concepts that are completely different in Spanish-language cultures and in Spanish itself? There are so many people in New York City that grew up speaking Spanish as either a first or second language, and this processing through language is central to their experience.
Why is it important for us to offer this programming as a museum?
It’s huge, being able to experience the Museum and discuss these ideas without feeling self-conscious or constantly thinking, “How is my English?” My hope is to build a space where we can have a really non-judgmental conversation about the work with the people who attend.
Senior Cyclist Representative Aurelia Taleb-Ahmed loves when someone signs up for AIDS/LifeCycle who’s never ridden a bike or done fundraising. “People have it in them,” they said. “We are just the cheerleaders and archeologists who help them unearth their awesomeness!”
Tamika Butler “couldn’t say yes fast enough” when asked to join the Center’s Board of Trustees. “I want to be a part of continuing to center race, equity, diversity, and inclusion in our work,” she says.
THE ROBERT GIARD GRANT FOR EMERGING LGBTQ+ PHOTOGRAPHERS:
Courtney Webster & Meg Turner Honored as Winners; riel Sturchio & Bianca Sturchio as Runners-Up; Eight Finalists Recognized
Left: "Patricide," (2016) by Courtney Webster & Meg Turner. Right: "Suntan Lotion," (2018) by riel Sturchio & Bianca Sturchio.
Queer|Art, in partnership with The Robert Giard Foundation, is pleased to announce the winners of the 2021 Robert Giard Grant for Emerging LGBTQ+ Photographers: collaborative duo Courtney Webster & Meg Turner, and runners-up: riel Sturchio & Bianca Sturchio. This year, the winner and the runner-up are each a collaborative duo, with projects focused on community building and engagement.
Courtney Webster and Meg Turner will receive a $10,000 cash grant to support the development of their project, Patricide, which interrogates dominant culture and its reproduction of tropes that reinforce the image of the ideal or heroic body as almost exclusively a white male body. Often centering Webster, a queer person of color, as a heroic and swoon-worthy protagonist, the artists render visible an alternative lexicon wherein the erased and invisible become seen, empowered, and celebrated.
Runners-up Bianca Sturchio and riel Sturchio will receive a $5,000 cash grant to support their collaborative photo-documentary project, Chasing Light, which platforms self-expression and provides visibility to individuals at the intersection of LGBTQ+, non-binary, and chronically ill or disabled identity.
The Robert Giard Grant for Emerging LGBTQ+ Photographers supports and promotes self-taught, early career or otherwise emerging LGBTQ+ artists, awarded on a yearly basis. This support is vital for emerging artists, who may lack the financial resources or institutional support available to more established artists. 187 applications were received for the inaugural award cycle. The 2021 judges included Mariama Attah, Emily Oliveira, Leonard Suryajaya, Paul Mpagi Sepuya, and Efrem Zelony-Mindell.
“Patricide, the collaborative project by Meg Turner and Courtney Webster, is an exciting reminder of the many voices, perspectives, and experiences within the photography community. The touring exhibition is such a clever and involved way of expanding these dominant narratives.”
—Mariama Attah, 2021 Robert Giard Grant Judge, photography curator, editor, and lecturer
COURTNEY WEBSTER & MEG TURNER, 2021 WINNERS
Courtney Webster is an independent film director, producer, and media accessibility activist who most recently produced the Thank God For Abortion anthem video with the artist Viva Ruiz. Meg Turner employs printmaking, photography, sign making, and installation to focus on queer fantasy and contemporary critique. Her first solo museum show, Here & Now, opened at The Contemporary Art Center in New Orleans in 2019.
Webster and Turner began their collaborative photo practice in New Orleans in 2015. Merging their filmmaking and photography practices, Webster and Turner carefully research, plan and build each shoot collectively. Their series, Patricide, has been exhibited in part at the New York gallery, Wild Project. According to the artists, the series “has always been about questioning dominant narratives in the media and understanding them as the mechanism that deliberately manufactures who is legitimate and entitled to dignity and power. These narratives impact the ways we live, develop our identities, and ultimately figure out how to exist in communities.” The work was accompanied with public street murals and has additionally been documented in the UK Magazine, Heroine. Individual works from the series have also been shown across New York and New Orleans in places including The Leslie Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, Bureau of General Services Queer Division, BRIC Arts, Wallach Gallery, and the University of New Orleans Gallery.
“This funding and recognition will allow us to expand the mediums we use and to open up access to more spaces to share it with the public. As two queer artists, we are so excited to have the support of the Robert Giard Foundation and Queer|Art for this project.”
—Courtney Webster & Meg Turner, 2021 Robert Giard Grant Winners
RIEL STURCHIO & BIANCA STURCHIO, 2021 RUNNERS-UP
Bianca and riel Sturchio are twin collaborators. Bianca Sturchio is a queer and disabled artist who works primarily in paint and collage, and collaborates in the photographic project Chasing Light. She uses her Masters of Social Work degree from the University of Southern Maine (2020) to work with underrepresented populations in the Portland, ME area. Bianca pairs her creative and academic backgrounds to advocate for disability justice increase representation for disabled artists. riel Sturchio is a queer interdisciplinary artist whose practice includes analog photography, printmaking, and sound sculpture. Their work often revolves around the body and their experiences with disability and chronic illness. They received an MFA in Interdisciplinary Studio Art from the University of Texas at Austin (2018).
riel Sturchio says of their ongoing collaborative project, “Chasing Light has allowed Bianca and I to self-direct our visibility, investigate the representation of queer identity and non-normative bodies, and explore the shifting role of image-maker and subject. Our relationship with the work stems directly from our individual and shared experiences with disability, chronic illness, and non-normative queer identity. Now, we wish to turn this lens outward and offer experiences for non-artists and creative individuals who identify at the intersection of LGBTQ+, non-binary, and chronically ill or disabled identity to see themselves through self-directed documentary photographs and the support of guided workshops. We aim to advance social justice through this work by giving others the opportunity to self-direct their narratives.”
2021 Robert Giard Grant Judge Efrem Zelony-Mindell writes, "riel Sturchio, and Bianca Sturchio excite me because they epitomize voices of a previously unseen future. Through these artists the voice and language of photography shifts, becoming more than its white patriarchal history. For me these artists bring narratives from their lived experiences to viewers who would otherwise never know that they existed.”
“This award supports our vision of opening up Chasing Light to other folks at the intersection of non-normativity, disability, and LGBTQ+ identity. We believe there is great power in vulnerability and sharing stories, and feel grateful for the ability to initiate this new expansion.”
—riel Sturchio & Bianca Sturchio 2021 Robert Giard Grant Runners-Up
2021 ROBERT GIARD GRANT FINALISTS
Eight finalists were recognized for the 2021 Robert Giard Grant. From left to right, top row: Michael DeCristo, Lee Laa Guillory, a. r. havel, Ian Lewandowski. From left to right, bottom row: Schaël Marcéus, Sarah Panzer, Coyote Park, and Zhidong Zhang.
In addition to the winners and runners up, eight other visual artists were acknowledged as finalists for this year—Michael DeCristo, Lee Laa Guillory, a. r. havel, Ian Lewandowski, Schaël Marcéus, Sarah Panzer, Coyote Park, and Zhidong Zhang.
You can learn more about each of the finalists and their creative practices at our website.
Robert Giard (1939-2002) was a portrait, landscape, and figure photographer who came to the practice of photography relatively late in life. In 1972 he began to take photographs, concentrating on landscapes of the South Fork of Long Island, portraits of friends, many of them artists and writers in the region, and the nude figure. He is best known for photographing over 500 LGBTQ+ writers and activists. A selection from this project, Particular Voices: Portraits of Gay and Lesbian Writers, was published in 1997 by MIT Press and led to a groundbreaking exhibit at the New York Public Library the following year.
In 1985, after seeing a performance of Larry Kramer’s The Normal Heart, as the AIDS crisis raged, Giard decided to turn his camera towards the LGBTQ+ literary community to preserve a record of queer lives and histories. He began documenting LGBTQ+ literary figures, both established and emerging, in a series of unadorned, yet sometimes witty and playful portraits that would eventually number over 500 by the time of his death.
Giard’s work can be found in the collections of The Brooklyn Museum, the Art Museum at the University of Toronto, the San Francisco Public Library, the New York Public Library, the Library of Congress, the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study; his complete archive, including work books and ephemera, can be found in the American Collection of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University.
Image credits—1.Patricide, 2016, Courtney Webster & Meg Turner; 2. Suntan Lotion, 2018. riel Sturchio & Bianca Sturchio.3. Slideshow of Images by Courtney Webster & Meg Turner, images courtesy of the artists; 4. Slideshow of Images by riel Sturchio & Bianca Sturchio, image courtesy of the artists; 5. Collage of Images by Finalists, images courtesy of the artists; 6. Robert Giard, 1985. Photo by Toba Tucker, Courtesy The Estate of Robert Giard