Women's History Month is celebrated to acknowledge, uncover, and celebrate the contributions of women in history, culture, and intellectual advancement. This year, we'd like to further amplify the voices of those often overlooked or purposefully marginalized by centering our book display around trans and queer womxn artists and allies represented in our collections.
Much of this material is not available in digital formats, so we've taken the books off the shelves and snapped some photos to entice you--don't you miss the orange carpet? If you're authorized to be on campus, please come in and see for yourself! If you're off-campus, you can always request a scan or have an item mailed to your home address. Wherever you are, explore the links for more information about these artists and their work.
Please note that our understanding of gender identity and the language used to describe it are constantly evolving. Some of the materials presented below may use language now deemed inaccurate, inappropriate, or even offensive. We do not condone the perpetuation of harmful language and we also will not presume to alter the language these creators have used to describe themselves, their work, and their world at a given moment.
Moving Backwards is a catalog of an exhibition held within the 58th International Art Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia, at the Pavilion of Switzerland, Venice, Italy, May 11-November 24, 2019. The video installation and letters to the audience explore "resistance practices, combining postmodern choreography and urban dance with guerrilla techniques and elements of queer underground culture." Berlin-based Pauline Boudry and Renate Lorenz have collaborated since 2007.
I Want was a 2015 double-projection film installation at Kunsthalle Zürich and Nottingham Contemporary. The script explores and creates a dialogue between punk-poet Kathy Acker (1947-1997) and Chelsea Manning, who in leaking military and diplomatic secrets exposed her own transgender identity. The film grapples with ideas of imperialism, gender, and sexuality in a military context.
I Travestiti documents Lisetta Carmi's photographs of non-binary individuals active in the subculture of Genoa's Jewish Quarter in the 1960s and early 1970s. Publishing and distributing this book was incredibly challenging in the 1970s but the photographs are generating renewed interest and study through exhibition and publication decades later. Carmi's photographs are sensitive, intimate, and personal images.
Take a look at the book's catalog record, this article from Frieze, this article from i-D Vice, and this recent exhibition at the Centre d'Art Contemporain Genève.
Sara Davidmann's richly illustrated book is full of reproduced archival materials, altered photographs, and fictional photographs exploring the historical record and her own imagination of her uncle's transgender identity. Living in the 1950s, Davidmann's uncle, Ken, was a man in public but a woman at home. Through the fictional photographs, Davidmann attempts to create a visual record of her uncle's identity.
Spend some time in conversation with Thelma Golden, the director and chief curator of the Studio Museum in Harlem and one of the judges for the 2020 cycle of the Queer | Art Illuminations Grant for Black Trans Women Artists. Golden believes strongly in the power and ability of artists as catalysts and has brought race and gender to the fore in her exhibitions and institutional leadership.
Stanya Kahn is a Los Angeles-based video artist exploring pain, pressure, and struggle with humor that blends the personal and universal, fiction and actual. Following a fictional ‘patient’ filmed by nurses holding the camera, It’s Cool, I’m Good blends personal trauma with economic, urban, and ecological stresses in just over 35 minutes. The book shares video stills alongside Kahn’s illustrations and three contributed essays.
Candice Lin is an interdisciplinary artist living and working out of Los Angeles, CA. Lin’s A Hard White Body documents a long-term, evolving project exploring the intersection of race, fetishization, queerness, otherness, and objectification. Taking inspiration from James Baldwin and Jeanne Baret – two seemingly disparate individuals – Lin shows both fragility and strength through creating a tenuous ecosystem of plants, porcelain, rank water, bodily fluids, and whatever the visitors to the exhibition wish to add through their invited interactions.
Take a look at the book's catalog record, the UChicago Arts Logan Center exhibition website, the Bétonsalon Centre d'art et de recherche exhibition website, the artist's page on the Ghebaly Gallery website, the artist's ARTPIL website, and this interview by Hyperallergic.
Ulrike Müller is a contemporary visual artist and member of the genderqueer feminist art collective LTTR. Manuela Ammer released Always Always Others alongside a solo show of Müller’s work. This book explores both Müller’s own artwork and her interpretations of other contemporary artists’ works through her lens as a genderqueer feminist.
Take a look at the book's catalog record, the artist's lecturer bio for the Yale School of Art, this interview by ARTnews, the artist's page on the Callicoon Fine Arts website, and the artist's Wikipedia page.
Sondra Perry is an interdisciplinary artist who focuses primarily on digital materials and performance to explore the Black experience and Black femininity. Typhoon Coming On is a powerful work referencing J.M.W. Turner’s The Slave Ship, originally titled Slavers Throwing overboard the Dead and Dying – Typhoon Coming On. Throughout her work, but especially here, Perry questions the insatiable need people seem to have to depict Black suffering and death.
Bettina Rheims is a French photographer who uses her work outside of commercial photography to explore questions of gender, sexuality, and self-expression. Gender Studies explores questions of androgyny, gender expression, and self-actualization with amateur models recruited through social media. The book includes both photographs and interviews with the models.
Remsen Wolff, a.k.a. Viv(ienne) Blum, was an artist and social activist. As a photographer, Wolff was especially interested in trans women and gender non-conforming individuals. All American Girls is a 2019 compilation of Wolff’s photographic portraits from the New York queer community in the 1990s, specifically drag queens and trans women. Wolff remained relatively unknown, even after his death, until his former assistant, Jochem Brouwer, began exhibiting Wolff's works in the late 2010s.
Take a look at the book's catalog record, this Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam exhibition website for another Wolff show and this video series with two of Wolff's subjects, this i-D Vice article, and the Remsen Wolff Collection website.
The Rug’s Topography is an exploration by Rana Young, with input from Lissa Rivera, on gender identity, expression, transition, voyeurism, and reconciling the separation of emotional intimacy from romantic intimacy. Accompanying Young's photography is an essay by Lissa Rivera, Young’s former partner. The work was created in the lead up to their breakup and the death of their romantic relationship.