Opening Reception: Saturday, February 2, 2013, 5-9pm
Panel Discussion on Queer Zines at ONE Archives: Wednesday, February 27, 2013, 7-9pm (More information here)
Talk and Reception with Alan Bell and Jeanne Córdova: Saturday, March 9, 2013, 5-7pm (More information below)
ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives celebrates its 60th Anniversary with Queers Print at the ONE Archives Gallery & Museum in West Hollywood, an exhibition exploring LGBTQ publishing and activism in Los Angeles. The exhibition features a range of queer magazines, newspapers, newsletters and zines, varying from foundational homophile publications such as ONE Magazine, groundbreaking gay liberation and lesbian-feminist titles such as The Advocate and The Lesbian Tide, and significant queer people of color publications such as BLK, as well as numerous DIY zines. Each title included in the show, over forty different publications in total, has been photocopied and bound for visitors to peruse and read, inviting the public to engage with six decades of queer history through the printed page.
Often founded as a response to widespread biases of the dominate media, or the desire to create a space where marginalized voices can meet and flourish, the distribution of news, ideas, and information through publications has been a driving force behind queer activism in the United States over the last sixty years. The exhibition mixes groundbreaking publications that had national and even international circulations with materials that would be understood as tangential to mainstream gay and lesbian history, such as early queer publications and zines that were self-produced and had a small circulation. Such an eclectic mix is meant to inspire new readings of history, while revealing some of the rare materials held at ONE to the public.
The exhibition focuses special attention on ONE Magazine, the first widely circulated publication for homosexuals in the United States, and the namesake of ONE Archives. First published in January 1953, ONE Magazine was distributed throughout the U.S. and abroad, giving voice to early LGBTQ activism, then termed the homophile movement. The magazine did not shy away from tackling provocative issues, such as employment discrimination, police harassment, and homosexual marriage, and often included queer literature, poetry, op-eds, and letters to the editor. The magazine’s 1958 Supreme Court victory over obscenity laws, the first time the court considered a case involving homosexuality, paved the way for all later queer publications in the U.S. As such, it is fitting for the exhibition to begin with and pay tribute to ONE’s legacy. In addition to a selection of copies of the magazine, the exhibition will also include archival objects such as printing blocks, original drawings, and paste-ups used to produce the magazine.
Additional publications on display include: Vice Versa (1947-48), the earliest known lesbian publication; The Advocate (founded in 1967), which began as the newsletter for the L.A. organization Personal Rights in Defense & Education (PRIDE) and is today the longest running queer publication in the U.S.; The Lesbian Tide (1971-1980), an influential lesbian-feminist magazine that was distributed nationally; Mirage (1974), arguably the first national transgender magazine; BLK (1988-1994), a local magazine for LGBTQ African Americans that became a nationally distributed news magazine; and many more.
ONE Archives would like to the University of Southern California Libraries and the City of West Hollywood for their support of exhibitions at the ONE Gallery. Queers Print is organized by David Frantz, Curator at ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives. Generous support for exhibitions and programming during ONE’s 60th Anniversary is provided by Wells Fargo.
Talk with Alan Bell and Jeanne Córdova
Saturday, March 9, 2013, 5-7pm
Reception, 5-6pm; Talk, 6-7pm
ONE Archives Gallery & Museum
626 North Robertson Boulevard
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Admission is free – suggested donation of $5
In conjunction with the exhibition Queers Print at the ONE Archives Gallery & Museum in West Hollywood and in celebration of ONE’s 60th Anniversary, Alan Bell, writer, activist and founder of BLK, and Jeanne Córdova, writer, activist, author and founder of The Lesbian Tide and Square Peg, will reflect on their involvement with the LGBTQ press and the historical importance of queer publications in building community, specifically for voices underrepresented by the dominant media. Arrive at 5pm for a reception; talk begins at 6pm.
Alan Bell is president of BLK Publishing Company, Inc., a company he founded in 1988 to publish magazines targeted to the black lesbian and gay community. At present, the firm concentrates on graphic design, print marketing, corporate identity and custom publishing. A special focus of the company is developing materials for community-based organizations that serve the health, educational and social needs of those residing in inner-city communities.
Bell took his first editing credit on his junior high school newspaper, and several years later was appointed editor-in-chief of his high school newspaper. Since then, he was founding editor of Gaysweek, New York’s first lesbian and gay weekly newspaper; Kujisource, a black AIDS newsletter; and several magazines for the black lesbian and gay community, most notably BLKand Blackfire. For six years, he was film critic for the Los Angeles Sentinel, a mainstream black weekly. His film criticism has also appeared in the Los Angeles Times. He is the editor of Buttmen: Erotic Stories and True Confessions by Gay Men Who Love Booty and two sequels for West Beach Books. Bell holds a B.A. in sociology from the University of California, Los Angeles, a B.S. in business from the University of the State of New York and is a M.A. candidate in sociology at California State University, Dominguez Hills.
Jeanne Córdova, Activist, Publisher & Author, published The Lesbian Tide – the national newsmagazine recognized as “the paper of record for the lesbian feminist decade (1971-1980). A pioneer of the West Coast LGBTQ movement, her lifelong activism has ranged from organizing major conferences including the first National Lesbian Conference (1973), to campaigning against Prop 6 and serving as Media Director for STOP Prop 64. She was a founder of many key organizations, including the LA Gay Press Association, and President of Stonewall Democratic Club. Córdova created the Community Yellow Pages, the nation’s largest LGBTQ business directory, co-founded LEX – The Lesbian Exploratorium – a cultural guerilla group, and has written extensively as a journalist and author. Her writing appears in many publications and anthologies, and her third book is the Lambda and Publishing Triangle 2012 award-winning When We Were Outlaws: A Memoir of Love & Revolution.