Now, where are we? 1967-2017' - Strand Gallery, 27th June to 9th July 2017
AndroTechne will present an exhibition in central London this summer to reflect upon the UK's social history, as part of commemorative events to mark the 50th anniversary of the decriminalisation of sex between men. Curated by Michael Petry, "Now, where are we? 1967-2017" will feature works in a range of media, artists’ talks, discussions, and events.
The exhibition runs at the Strand Gallery, 32 John Adam Street (near Trafalgar Square), WC2N 6BP, from 27 June to 9 July in parallel with the annual Pride Festival which culminates with the Pride Parade on Saturday 8th July
Participating artists: Jonathan Armour, Guy Burch, Brian Dennis, Richard Dickson, Santiago Echeverry, Francisco Gomez de Villaboa, Sunil Gupta, Angel Ito, Brad Kenny, Richard Sawdon Smith and Milan Svanderlik.
Opening Night - Tuesday 27th June 2017, from 17.00 to 20.00.
Private View – Wednesday 28th June, 13.00 to 18.00, by invitation only.
Talks Event - Friday 30th June 2017, from 18:30 to 21.00, featuring presentations by and discussions with Jonathan Cooper OBE, Professor Richard Sawdon Smith, Sunil Gupta, Santiago Echeverry.
This exhibition is an artists' led initiative, and as such is funded primarily by those exhibiting. In addition we are thankful for funding and sponsorship from the following organisations
Westminster City Council, with particular support from the Wards local to the event.
Elliot Vaughn and Colin Horswell, who in addition to their generous donation, have lent the original copy of the Wolfenden Report on display in the gallery.
Emerald Life for sponsoring the drinks on the Opening Night. www.emeraldlife.co.uk
Jonathan Armour and Richard Sawdon Smith would like to thank Gilead Sciences for sponsoring InSideShow.
Talks Event - Friday 30 June, Adam House, 7-10 Adam St, London WC2N 6AA.
The Talks Event will be chaired by Dr. Kevin Childs. Dr. Childs is a writer and an art historian.
Jonathan Cooper OBE.
Title: From Torment to Tolerance, Acceptance to Equality: the Ups & Downs
of Every Day Life for England’s Gay Men
Downtrodden and denied for centuries, the partial decriminalisation of
homosexuality in 1967 was just the beginning of the journey towards equality for gay
and bisexual men. Despite making gay sex legal, prosecutions increased during the
70s and 80s. The LGBT community was then ravaged by HIV/AIDS and our rights
continued to be denied. Section 28 insulted and offended us and the criminal law still
regulated our sex lives in ways that didn’t apply to straight people. And then legal
equality bloomed. How? Why? This short talk reflects on the past, present and future
for gay rights.
Professor Richard Sawdon Smith.
Title: Death of Youth: Queering the new normal
My artist practice can often be read as autobiographical and currently draws on
living as a HIV+ gay man in their fifty’s. In my talk, I want to bring together the
themes and ideas relevant to the two different projects displayed in the gallery.
Death of Youth series, created working with a couple of young photographers, is a
polemical project for me. The initial images, shot the week of my 50th birthday,
seek to explore issues of not just aging on the gay scene but how youth may
negotiate encounters through the Internet and mobile apps. Death of Youth could be
read as a mid-life crisis, feeling situated outside a gay culture primarily predicated
on youth or my nostalgia for a time pre-internet, where social engagement
happened in the ‘real’ world. In an age of apps, cruising websites and proliferation of
sexual proclivities through the network, a shopping list of requirements often
predetermines any meeting; engagement and intimacy can be overlooked.
Unfortunately, this list can also include the term ‘clean’. The stigma associated with
HIV still hasn’t gone away, which the second project, In ‘Sideshow’, a collaboration
with the artist Jonathan Armour, tries to deal with, by creating an immersive VR
experience enabling the viewer to enter the body of someone who is HIV positive
with an undetectable viral load.
Sunil Gupta and Charan Singh.
Title: The making of ‘Delhi: Communities of Belonging’
Our collaborative book and exhibition project, ‘Delhi: Communities of Belonging’ is a
portrait of queer people living in a city and country that itself lives under the shadow
of a British anti-sodomy law that dates to 1860. So, whilst in the ‘Now, Where are
We? 1967-2017’ exhibition we are commemorating the anniversary of the ‘then’ of
1967, when the law was read down in the UK, we should not forget those that still
live under the shadow of the same draconian law in Britain’s former colonies. By
working collaboratively, we could access both of our friendship and kinship networks
across class and caste to reveal how the formation of communities is central to the
experience of queer lives in India regardless of background. In a society where social
and family ties are essential for survival it’s not possible simply to ‘come out’ and
walk away from existing family structures. A new process of decolonising the
language of sexuality and human rights has to begin.
Using the Kinect 3D sensor, Santiago Echeverry captures the lives and spaces of
the LGBTQ community of South Florida, USA. Drag queens, gogo dancers, nudists
and bartenders are deconstructed in space, using code, editing and visualization
methods, with the goal to give a voice and preserve the memory of our community.
This presentation contextualizes the technology and the social processes that define
Echeverry's Cabaret project, against the backdrop of intolerance and the extreme
right's ascension in the USA, reminding us of Christopher Isherwood's Berlin in the
1920s and 30s.