On the Domestic Front : Scenes of Everyday Queer Life

Curated by James M. Saslow

Robert Giard's 1989 photograph, Sunday Morning, is featured in the upcoming exhibition On the Domestic Front: Scenes of Everyday Queer Life at the Leslie-Lohman Museum, curated by James. M. Saslow.

The exhibition features some 70 works drawn mostly from the Leslie-Lohman Museum collection and answers the age-old question, "What do LGBT people do when they're not having sex?" The artworks range widely in subject matter, medium, and style, cover the period from early 20th century to the present, and offer a suggestive panorama of LGBTQ lives in the United States that--until now--has been neglected by museums, galleries, and historians. 

The exhibition’s theme is timely in a decade that has seen the unprecedented mushrooming of same-sex marriage, child-rearing, and domesticity increase in acceptance both legally and socially. The thrust of queer politics has shifted from asserting our right to be different and erotic toward demanding the right to do whateveryone else does. “Domestic front,” is a military metaphor that stresses the essential contribution that daily living must continue even in wartime, as with the soldiers during war on the “battle front.” Living queer lives has long been an active battle front in America’s ongoing culture wars. Now, the queer fight has shifted from our right to be different toward the right to be “normal” and unremarkable. Queer genre imagery is a weapon in our battle to secure what we might call the radicality of the ordinary.

image: Robert Giard, Sunday Morning, 1989, Silver gelatin print, 14 x 14 in. Collection of Allen Ellenzweig, © Estate of Robert Giard, Courtesy of Stephen Bulger Gallery

August 14, 2015 through December 06, 2015

Leslie-Lohman Museum
26 Wooster Street
New York, NY 10013