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New GLBT History Museum exhibit commemorates the 30th anniversary of the first bisexual political rally

SAN FRANCISCO – A new multimedia exhibit opening May 29 at the GLBT History Museum tells the story of San Francisco Bay Area’s bisexual activism that since the 1970s has been grounded in the politics of visibility, accountability, and vitality. A playful spirit has mixed with a seriousness of purpose at key moments across four decades, fueling today’s dynamic global bisexual movement.

Titled “BiCONIC FLASHPOINTS: 4 Decades of Bay Area Bisexual Politics,” the exhibit features never-before-displayed video, artifacts and photographs from the GLBT Historical Society’s archival bisexual collections as well as the personal holdings of bisexual leaders. The show’s Community Curators include Lani Ka’ahumanu, Emily Drennen, Martin Rawlings-Fein, and Lindasusan Ulrich.

BiPOL founding organizer Lani Ka'ahumanu wields her "Bi-Phobia Shield" as she marches with her contingent in the 1984 Lesbian and Gay Freedom Day Parade; photo credit Arlene Krantz:

“Bisexual politics are as simple and complex as love itself,” said Community Curator Lani Ka’ahumanu. “Bisexual history grounds and inspires us toward a more welcoming, inclusive, and engaged future. This exhibit challenges historic and ongoing erasure and compels everyone to reconsider the B in LGBT.”

The show tells this story in four flashpoints: Founded in 1976, the Bisexual Center in San Francisco was a beacon of visibility and support. In 1984, the recently formed BiPOL registered and ran a Vice Presidential candidate at the Democratic National Convention, resulting in the first-ever public Bisexual Rights Rally. In 1990, BiPOL convened the first National Bisexual Conference to organize BiNET USA as well as producing groups for Jewish bisexuals and bisexuals of color. In 2008, bisexuals facing erasure in the “gay marriage” debate engaged in “unVEILing injustice,” which moved LGBT organizational and media language toward greater inclusivity and accuracy.

The show is part of an ongoing series in the GLBT History Museum’s Community Gallery that partner community curators with exhibitions professionals to create new perspectives on Bay Area queer history. Sonoma State University Women’s and Gender Studies Professor Don Romesburg directs the Community Gallery.

“BiCONIC FLASHPOINTS: 4 Decades of Bay Area Bisexual Politics” runs May 29, 2014-August 15, 2014. An opening reception is set for Thursday, May 29, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. Additionally, the GLBT History Museum on Thursday, July 17, from 7:00-9:00 p.m. will host a special program celebrating the groundbreaking anthology Bi Any Other Name: Bisexual People Speak Out (1991). Contributors to the anthology will do readings of their works, including Kuwaza Imara, Carol Queen and Naomi Tucker. This will be a benefit for the GLBT History Museum and the Bay Area Bisexual Network.

Admission to the museum is $5.00 (general); $3.00 (California students); free for members of the GLBT Historical Society. For more information, visit www.glbthistorymuseum.org.



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Posted by Associate Editor on May 8, 2014. Filed under Around the Nation, Online Only, Top Highlights. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

1 Comment for “New GLBT History Museum exhibit commemorates the 30th anniversary of the first bisexual political rally”

  1. Thanks for this article and your reporting. What you do is appreciated. 
     
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