Celebrating LGBTQ Visual Arts in New York City
January 13, 2021
The LaGuardia and Wagner Archives (“the Archives”) at LaGuardia Community College, which collects and preserves materials illuminating the social and political history of New York City, has published a 2021 calendar focused on LGBTQ Visual Arts in New York City from the Stonewall Rebellion in 1969 to today.
A free download of the calendar is available on the Archives’ website.
The calendar draws inspiration from the Archives’ LGBTQ Collection, which explores the LGBTQ community’s struggle for social equality in New York with a special emphasis on Queens. Representatives from Visual AIDS and Queer|Art|Mentorship provided input on the calendar.
The theme, LGBTQ Visual Arts in NYC, reflects LaGuardia’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. Several CUNY faculties have their work featured in the calendar, including LaGuardia’s own Liena Vayzman, York College’s Margaret Rose Vendryes, and Brooklyn College’s Patricia Cronin. Work from Brooklyn College alum Felicita Maynard is featured as well.
“Pieces were selected not just for their beautiful artistry, but to explore the impact of art on the decades-long advocacy work of New York’s LGBTQ community to come out of the shadows and gain social acceptance and protections under the law,” said the Archives’ Stephen Weinstein, Ph.D.
As example, Patricia Cronin’s sculpture of a loving embrace between her and her partner was unveiled in 2002 at Woodlawn Cemetery in The Bronx as a statement against laws that prevented same-sex couples from being legally allowed to marry. Her work and the work of other LGBTQ artists are credited with helping to pave the way for the legalization of same-sex marriage in 2015, and for other milestones in the fight for LGBTQ rights.
Weinstein, along with Chelsea Del Rio, Steven Hitt, Arianna Martinez, Liena Vayzman, and Natalie Willens, selected the works featured in the calendar, which was designed by artist Tuesday Smillie.
Funding from the Mayor’s Office of the City of New York and the Council of the City of New York made this publication possible. New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson and Council Member Daniel Dromm have played key roles in the Archives’ LGBTQ Collection.
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LaGuardia Community College (LAGCC), located in Long Island City, Queens, educates thousands of New Yorkers annually through degree, certificate, and continuing education programs. LaGuardia is a national voice on behalf of community colleges, where half of all U.S. college students’ study. Part of the City University of New York (CUNY), the College reflects the legacy of our namesake, Fiorello H. LaGuardia, the former NYC mayor beloved for his championing the underserved. Since our doors opened in 1971, our programs regularly become national models for pushing boundaries to give people of all backgrounds access to a high quality, affordable college education.