Main | Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Our Passionate Struggle

Two weeks ago I visited a new exhibit from the SF GLBT Historical Society called Passionate Struggle: The Dynamics Of San Francisco's GLBT History, which is housed on the corner of Castro and 18th Streets in a storefront that once was the site of Wolf Camera.
This exhibit explores the dynamic tensions between passion and struggle that have forged San Francisco's very queer past century. Through four lenses-Places, Politics, Pleasures, and People -this extraordinary show invites you to take a peek into the world-renowned archives of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society.
Principally funded by Levis Strauss and Washington Mutual (with additional support from many others), the exhibit reaches back to the very beginnings of the gay movement right up through such relatively recent events as the murder of Matthew Shepard. Two extremely moving highlights for me were a gloriously gaudy beaded pantsuit worn by Sylvester and the blood-soaked, bullet-riddled suit worn by Harvey Milk when he was murdered. I was also fascinated to find the sewing machine on which Gilbert Baker made the first rainbow flag.

Photos are allowed at the exhibit, below is my slideshow. Go here for full-screen versions.

UPDATE: Robert Cameron of Levi Strauss writes to mention that the show will run until October 2009, not the "several weeks" noted on the Society's homepage. Kudos to Levis, Washington Mutual, the Folsom Street Fair, and all the other sponsors.

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