“Hollywood and DeVine” act auction to benefit Gulf Coast Archive

Hooray for Hollywood! and hooray for LGBT history! The two collide on Sunday, February 19, when the Gulf Coast Archive and Museum of LGBT History presents “Hollywood & DeVine Broadway Lights, & Television Sets Auction and Sale.” (Say that three times fast.)

Up for auction will be a stunning collection of Hollywood memorabilia, much of it left to the archive by the late Larry Lingle, who for years owned the Lobo Bookstore on Westheimer. Included in the auction are a rare collection of posters advertising the musical Mame with Judy Garland (Judy never stared in Mame, the posters were mock-ups made when the gay-icon was being considered for the titular role), sheet music, vinyl records, art, photographs, Star Trek memorabilia and more.

On display during the auction will be the historic bar tops from Mary’s Naturally, the iconic Westheimer gay bar that closed in 2009. GCAM is currently working to restore the bar tops. This will be the public’s first opportunity to view the effort.

Judy Reeves, who is curating the auction (and donated the Star Trek memorabilia), told OutSmart Magaine that the auction is needed to provide more space for GCAM’s collection and to raise funds for on-going expenses. “We are planning to give that project some priority with some of these funds. There is always the ongoing—the supplies for hanging exhibits, those frames and nails, etc. It can add up. It gets expensive after a while.”

“Hollywood & DeVine Broadway Lights, & Television Sets Auction and Sale” takes the stage at 2 pm this Sunday at the GLBT Cultural Center (401 Branard).

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“Spectacular Damage” at Gulf Coast Archive puts human face on AIDS crisis

"Joe" - one of the paintings from "Spectacular Damage"

The nude models for Jack Dorlan’s Spectacular Damage show are not people one typically wishes to see naked, and that’s the point. The models, all men living with HIV, carry the lumps and scars of the virus and its treatments with dignity, defiance and a quiet longing that leaps from the canvas.

Painting in a style immediately reminiscent of the late Lucian Freud, Dorlan’s brutally honest brush makes no attempt to beautify the reality of his subject’s lives. As a result the very real, and “spectacular,” beauty of these damaged bodies shines through.

“These paintings examine the contemporary human body as it is affected by HIV treatment,” explains Doran. “Due to the effects of HIV and the medications required to manage the virus, the human body has taken on new characteristics that alter the human form in a way that has never before been seen in the history of mankind. As HIV research and treatments improve, these characteristics will cease to be a common trait among those living with HIV. These bodies are temporary.”

Spectacular Damage is presented by the Gulf Coast Archives and Museum at the GLBT Cultural Center (401 Branard) Sunday, January 8, from 3-5 pm. Admissions is free. Fifty percent of the proceeds from the sale of prints of the collection’s paintings goes to assist the models in paying for HIV treatments and medications.

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Houston ARCH seeks public submissions for new logo

Houston ARCH proposed logos

History relies on historians, whether the formal history of the academic or the informal history of grandpa’s stories, someone must tell the tale for the story to live on. The straight world has many formal institutions designed to maintain its story, from museums to archives to oral history projects the stories of straight people are well documented and preserved.

Queer history, on the other hand, is far more fragile. As a community we have a habit of separating ourselves by generations and the documents of our recent past, the fliers, t-shirts and pamphlets, are often seen as ephemeral trash, rather than important historical documents.

Several institutions have been created to try to preserve that history, including the Botts Archive, the Gulf Coast Archive, and archives at the University of Houston, Rice University and the Transgender Foundation of America. These desperate efforts have joined together to form the Houston Area Rainbow Collective History (Houston ARCH), a coordinated effort to preserve and document LGBT History in Houston.

Of course, any great organization needs a great logo, and that’s where Houston ARCH is reaching out to the public for help. Through January 5 you can submit your design via e-mail to billyhoya@billyhoya.info. Designs must contain the name “Houston ARCH,” and may spell out the acronym, also designs should be be scalable, work both in color and black and white, and be suitable for print and online reproduction. Designers should take care that their submissions are not confusable with logo’s of similarly named organizations.

So far only two proposals have been submitted and loaded to the Houston ARCH website for comment. Final voting for the design will take place January 25 at the regular Houston ARCH meeting.

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East coast victories for LGBT candidates

While we’re waiting here in Houston for the results of today’s municipal elections the Victory Fund reports of victories for LGBT candidates on the East coast where polls closed an hour earlier than Texas.

State Del. Adam Ebbin (D-District 30) was elected to Virginia’s state Senate today, making him the Commonwealth’s first openly gay senator.

“I am honored by the trust the voters have showed in me,”  Ebbin said in a statement. “During the campaign, I listened to the voters’ concerns and will work on behalf of the values we all share: improving our public schools, expanding our transit system and cleaning up Virginia’s environment. I will make sure their voices are heard…”

“Alex Morse, a 22-year-old graduate of Brown University, has just been elected mayor of Holyoke, Mass., a city of nearly 40,000 residents near Springfield…”

“Zach Adamson has won his race for city council in Indianapolis, giving the city its first openly LGBT city council member.”

“An incumbent on the Largo, Fla., City Commission who attacked her openly gay opponent over his sexual orientation has lost her reelection bid to him tonight. Michael Smith defeated Mary Gray Black, who has a history of anti-gay and anti-trans activism on the commission.”

—  admin

Former Coast Guard Member Leads Repeal Efforts in Illinois

The following comes from HRC Field Organizer and military veteran Lee Reinhart:

Shortly after the 9/11 terror attacks I decided to rejoin our military.  Ready to serve again,  I decided to serve by joining the Coast Guard.  This decision was cut short just three months into my enlistment. After a visit to a gay bar (with both gay and straight shipmates), I quickly found myself on the road to discharge.

During the investigation, Navy JAG lawyers told me the investigation was flawed, that my command had insufficient proof and that I could stay in if I denied I was gay. After years of being out to my family and having served openly in the Navy 1995-1999, I was not willing to lie.

Now, instead of serving my country in uniform, I’m proudly working to help America live up to her promise of liberty and justice for ALL.  I’m working with the Human Rights Campaign in Illinois to help repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” I love our country and hope to return to service one day soon.

I am calling on all Illinois voters to call  Senator-elect Mark Kirk’s office and ask for his immediate support in repealing the ban.  His office number is 202.225.4835.  Call today!

Calling isn’t the only thing that we have planned for the coming weeks in Illinois; if you want to help out, we are always looking for volunteers. Contact me at 773.680.0620 to find out how.


Human Rights Campaign | HRC Back Story

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Hurricane Earl Aims For East Coast

Hurricane Earl was upgraded to a “major category three” storm this morning by the National Hurricane Center. It looks like Labor Day Weekend could be rather wild for some of us. The last hurricane to hit the northeast was 1991′s Hurricane Bob.

Joe. My. God.

—  John Wright