The title of the exhibition at Tate Britain (www.tate.org.uk) is Queer British Art 1861-1967 until October 1st 2017. An historical journey throughout one of the most controversial and difficult topics: LGBT community, or to quote the title of the exhibition, “queer”, word used to indicate all those people who are not straight.
Starting from pre-Raffaello artists to Francis Bacon and David Hockney (www.urbanmirrors.com/en/david-hockney), the exhibition unfolds as if it was a tale, rich in emotions and interiority especially due to the delicate side of human souls. A tale made of silence and conflicts, oppressing morality, fear, but also freedom and the will to be present with one’s own individuality and emotions even if they are different from the majority’s.
It is a polyhedral illustration ranging from: photos, books and objects telling about the ironic and dramatic lives of those who have been abandoned or had to hide or even those who managed to emerge loving fearlessly or the extreme choice of some who ended their lives in order to stop suffering.
We can see some famous artists portrayed who experienced hardship like Virginia Woolf by Man Ray; a portrait of Oscar Wilde by Robert Harper Pennington. This journey ends with the abolition of death penalty for sodomy in 1861 and the abolition of male homosexuality crime in 1967.
So we go deep into the illogicality of this world that represses ancient and natural impulses towards freedom that we are still working on today.
Article by Serena Manna
English translation by Chiara Vilmercati
Cover image: Henry Scott Tuke “The Critics” 1927 – Oil on panel 412 x 514 mm – Warwick District Council (Leamington Spa, UK) Courtesy of Tate London