Last week I told you, I visited the exhibition „Homosexuality_ies“. The German Historical Museum (Deutsches Historisches Museum) and Gay Museum* are showing this exhibition until next year. Covering a total area of 1600 square meters, “Homosexuality_ies” documents 150 years of the history, politics and culture of homosexual women and men in Germany.
Of course I had to read the catalogue. During my read of the foreword and preface, I have to admit, I had no idea of all these topics. Have you ever heard of paragraph 175? I didn’t. Now I am a little bit ashamed, I never heard of it. It was a German law which stated, that sexual acts between men are punishable. No word about women! It wasn’t imaginable women had a sexuality. These and some other paragraphs were so strange. I don’t understand them. It seems they were from a different time or a different world. §175 came into effects in 1872. The persecution of gays and lesbians at the time of National Socialism intensified. The point is, this paragraph was disestablished 1994! Any questions? I was shocked, when I read the year. I thought, it must have been earlier….. I thought… I don’t know. I am stumped.
I recognize that changes in our system need time – a lot of time. Since 2001 humans have the opportunity to make their relationship, no matter which kind, official. 14 years later – today people are still being executed in some parts of the world because of their sexual orientation.
Doesn’t history show us, homosexuality has always existed?
I am very confused after reading the first 5 pages. The catalogue’s worth it! I think about the whole conflict, skim through the book and discover art works, photos, photo series of men, women, transvestites, black lesbians, impersonators of men, etc. In short and very precise sections single words, places, shortcuts, objects or historical happenings are explained. This art book is very informative. I had no foreknowledge, so I learned a lot. The little star and the underscore (Gay Museum* / Homosexulity_ies) are breaking the restriction of gender. It is a specific problem in German language.
I really love the exhibition and the catalogue, otherwise I hadn’t writen so much about it. A lot of stuff to think about. The conception of the exhibition is fantastic.
The last chapter of the book is about the exhibition and a statement of the curators. They describe the exhibition as a “close integration of content, curatorial conception and spatial dramaturgy”.
#book | HOMOSEXUALITÄT_EN
#author | Sarah Bornhorst, Birgit Bosold, Dorothée Brill, Noemi Molitor, Klaus Müller, Kristine Schmidt
#publishing house | Sandstein Verlag
#language | German
#ISBN | 978-3-95498-163-2 (German), 978-3-954498-172-4 (German with an English notebook)
#pages | 224
#published | 2015
you can get your copy here.