LGBTQ+ History Month
We believe that museums should be safe and welcoming spaces for everyone. Throughout February, we are proud to support LGBTQ+ History Month. This is a month to recognise and celebrate LGBTQ+ people in all their rich diversity. However, our celebration of diversity extends far beyond just one month. We have activities and resources that are available all year round, and inclusion and diversity are embedded into all our work, programmes and decision-making processes.
Find out more...
Queering Manchester Museum
We believe that museums should be safe and welcoming spaces for everyone. Queering Manchester Museum is our online resource that brings together our LGBTQ+ events and activities. We aim to bring new voices to our collections and explore objects and histories through queer storytelling. We hope you find these resources useful, and that some of the stories capture your imagination to think about museum collections in different ways.
Queer Desires: Every Object Tells a Story
Wednesday 23 February
“Remembering us in a photo kiosk…a fresh start and a new beginning.”
'Queer Desires: Every Object Tells a Story' is an extension to South Asia Gallery Collective member Kirit Patel’s explorative project ‘Queer Desires’. Over the course of his MA studies, Kirit invited people who identified as LGBTQ+ and Asian or Middle Eastern to choose an object with personal significance and share their stories of why it matters to them.
It begins with a body, an entity, an object. A book, a photograph, a phone number, a ring.
In this workshop, we will relive some of these experiences with Kirit and two special guest speakers who were original interviewees for Kirit's MA project and who will once again reflect on their personal object as a starting point for conversation. However, this time around we invite you, our audience, to become participants – to share this moment and to reflect on these objects together. What story do these objects hold for you?
This workshop includes an introduction by our Creative Producer, Hattie Kongaunruan, with exclusive updates on the progress of the South Asia Gallery.
This reflective workshop will focus on the experiences of people who identify as LGBTQ+ and South Asian, but is inclusive of all who wish to attend and contribute, no matter how you identify in the space.
This is an adult programme, but the content will be suitable for all ages. However, it is recommended that you check content and appropriateness for your child or children.
LGBTQ+ Tours and Trails
Challenging the traditional ways in which museums have interpreted objects brings opportunities to create spaces where LGBTQ+ people can see themselves represented. We will continue to add new, diverse voices to our collection.
Check out our digital trail which brings LGBTQ+ voices to the collection. The trail includes some of Manchester Museum’s most iconic objects as well some hidden gems.
For LGBTQ+ History Month we are taking you on a journey through natural history and the ancient world, bringing new voices to the collections and opening up the possibility for multiple interpretations.
Through stories of gender, sexuality and family, we take a look at what is natural and what has been culturally constructed by modern society.
Although Manchester Museum is temporarily closed to the public while we complete our hello future transformation, we are still here for you. If LGBTQ+ History Month has inspired you to take a new look at museum objects, all our collections are available to search or browse online.
Activities and Resources
Get creative with these fun craft activities and puzzles! Just click on the pictures below to download. These activities are designed for all ages, but please make sure that young children have adult supervision.
Have fun and don't forget to share your creations!
We have put together some links and resources from organisations doing great work with LGBTQ+ people and their families. We will continue adding to this list.
And for a deeper dive... We've brought together some research and writing by staff from across the museum.
How can Museums tell LGBTQ+ Stories
with Dan Vo
Historically, LGBTQ+ people and their histories have been absent from museum displays and narratives, how can museums start to tell LGBTQ+ stories? In this episode we are joined by Dan Vo, an advocate for LGBTQ+ inclusion in museums and the Project Manager for the Queer Heritage and Collections Network, working with museums and heritage sites across the country. Dan is joined in conversation by Mattie Davies from Manchester Museum’s Learning and Engagement team, Mattie is also the Trans Youth Work Coordinator for the Proud Trust.
Mattie and Dan reflect on their own experiences, exploring the power of storytelling and the importance of representation and belonging for LGBTQ+ people in museums.
How do everyday objects tell our stories?
with Dr Denise Kwan
What stories are hidden in everyday objects and why is telling these stories so important? In this episode we speak with Dr Denise Kwan, an artist, writer, and art lecturer whose project ‘Object-Stories of British Chinese Women’ tells the journeys of diasporic Chinese women in the UK through their everyday objects.
The project invited women to present an object of personal significance to explore how questions of belonging and identity are entangled in the most everyday of things. Participants talked about their lives through everyday objects and drawing on these stories as inspiration, the women attended art workshops to explore ways of visualising the significance of their possessions.
Carry on Collecting: Sex, Gender and Ethnography
with Stephen Welsh
In this talk, Stephen Welsh draws attention to the historical ethnocentricity of museum displays and interpretation. Collections assembled in Britain in the late 19th and early 20th centuries were invariably informed by contemporary notions of gender and sex.
Chiefly male collectors misrepresented and misappropriated objects associated with concepts of gender and sex found beyond Europe to fit their own particular colonialist worldview. Sex was inextricably associated with childbirth, women with domesticity and men with warfare and violence.
This talk was part of the Wellcome Collection's Sexology Season. It was recorded on 2 March 2015 at Manchester Museum.
LGBTQ+ History Month across Manchester
Manchester was the world’s first industrial city, Victorian Manchester was a hotbed of radical ideas, home to Anti-Corn Law League agitators and rioting Chartists. As a result, its history is steeped in political activism, including the protest for LGBTQ+ rights.
Here are a few of the LGBTQ+ History Month activities and events that are happening across Manchester this February...
People's History Museum, Manchester
An evening of talks exploring and celebrating LGBT+ histories for OUTing the Past Festival.
As part of PHM’s 2020-2021 programme exploring migration, this event will focus on how migration has influenced LGBT+ history and the fight for LGBT+ rights.
OUTing the Past is an international celebration of LGBT+ history that takes place throughout the year, and across the world.
Suitable for ages 18+
11 February 2022
Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester
Join Manchester Art Gallery's artist in residence, Jez Dolan or Curator, Fiona Corridan for tours and discussion about Jarman and his work.
Free, no need to book, just gather in the exhibition in Gallery 17.
Jez Dolan works from studios at Paradise Works, Salford. Derek Jarman is a central influence on his work as an artist and his practice underlines the intersections between queerness, sexuality, identity and memory.
3 & 17 February 2022, 1-1.45pm
Contact celebrates queer culture with an extraordinary line up of LGBTQ+ talent.
In 2022, the festival will platform a broad range of life experience, forge alternative paths for celebrating queer identities and – for the first time – will create opportunities to engage in educational activities around queer life and health.
The programme start with Kings of Pecs for an evening of swoon-worthy cabaret featuring local guest Kings, building to a spectacular finale with the Family Vogue Ball.
11-13 February 2022
Online showcase for Kenneth Morris, fashion designer and house auntie at House of Noir.
During the summer of 2021, The House of Noir’s Kenneth Morris embarked on a project funded through HOME’s Develop Fund to create a collection of unapologetically empowering Afropunk, Afrocentric, Afrofuturistic inspired looks and develop their own craft along the way.
Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester
In this talk, Greg Thorpe discusses the work of three visual artists whose work on HIV and AIDS politicise(d) the virus in ways that are inextricably linked to survival, defiance, despair and beauty.
17 February 2022, 5.30-7.30pm