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LGBTQ Perspectives on Equality Exhibits A First For Charlotte

07.10.2014

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (JULY 10, 2014) –Levine Museum of the New South will open LGBTQ Perspectives on Equality to the public on July 25, which will feature four exhibits that delve into LGBTQ history and the people responsible for bringing LGBTQ concerns to the fore. The project is the first of its kind in the Charlotte region where, according to the 2010 U.S. Census, more than 2,000 same-sex couples call home; more than 18,000 same-sex couples live in North Carolina. Levine Museum of the New South seeks to provide visitors with the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of the LGBTQ community, broaden cultural competence, and join the larger national discussion around gay rights.

“LGBTQ activists have long looked to the Civil Rights Movement as a model in the campaign for equality,” says museum President Emily Zimmern. “As Levine Museum continues its two-year exhibit and program series Destination Freedom: Civil Rights Struggles Then and Now, the museum will present a new suite of exhibits and programs that examine LGBTQ history and the struggle for equality that continues today.”

“These exhibits break new ground in our region as they document and preserve a chapter of Charlotte’s history not previously told,” says museum board member and PNC Bank Executive VP Matt Springman. “The museum has featured men, women, children, black and white, rich and poor, long time residents and newcomers who have shaped the south since the Civil War. Part of this history includes LGBTQ people, their struggles, and how they’ve shaped cities across the U.S.”

LGBTQ Perspectives on Equality takes a look at the history and struggles at national, regional, local and personal levels. The exhibits include:

  • Out of the Shadows: Gay America from Kinsey to Stonewall - Tells the story of how the country sought to define what it meant to be gay and lesbian in post-World War II America, before the Stonewall Riots in New York City in 1969.
  • Pauli Murray: Imp, Crusader, Priest, Dude - Shares Murray’s life story, including her ambitions, accomplishments and struggles as a writer, lawyer, feminist, professor, poet, first African American female Episcopal priest and member of the LGBTQ community.
  • Publicly Identified: Coming Out Activist in the Queen City – Shows a timeline of Charlotte’s LGBTQ history curated by UNC Charlotte assistant director for sexual and gender diversity Joshua Burford, and featuring selections from the J. Murrey Atkins Special Collections at UNC Charlotte.
  • Minding the Ts and Qs: Gender Identity - Area artists explore interpretations of gender identity through visual cues and use of space.

Community listening sessions, in conjunction with the museum’s board of directors and Carolina Actors Studio Theatre’s Angels in America production, were held earlier this year to get feedback on how to make LGBTQ Perspectives on Equality educational, engaging, and beneficial to visitors. Levine Museum also worked in partnership with Greensboro’s Elsewhere Museum and CMS educator Elizabeth Rummage to develop and incorporate interactive exercises into the exhibits to further involve museumgoers.

LGBTQ Perspectives on Equality wil be on display through January 25, 2015. It is made possible thanks to presenting sponsor PNC, funding from the Charlotte Lesbian and Gay Fund and the Arts & Science Council, media sponsor The Charlotte Observer, and financial support from a host committee of individuals and organizations from the Charlotte area.

This project is part of Levine Museum's two-year initiative Destination Freedom: Civil Rights Struggles Then and Now, which is supported by presenting sponsor Bank of America and education sponsor UNC Charlotte.

About Levine Museum of the New South

Our mission is to engage a broad-based audience in the exploration and appreciation of the diverse history of the South since the Civil War, with a focus on Charlotte and the surrounding Carolina Piedmont. Through the Museum we collect, preserve, and interpret the materials, sights, sounds, and ideas that illumine and enliven this history. The museum presents opportunities for life-long learning about this history for the benefit, enjoyment and education of children and adults, and provides historical context for contemporary issues and a community forum for thoughtful discussion. For more information, visit http://www.museumofthenewsouth.org or find us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/LevineMuseum.

About PNC Foundation
The PNC Foundation, which receives its principal funding from The PNC Financial Services Group (NYSE: PNC), actively supports organizations that provide services for the benefit of communities in which it has a significant presence. The foundation focuses its philanthropic mission on early childhood education and community and economic development, which includes the arts and culture. Through Grow Up Great, its signature cause that began in 2004, PNC has created a $350 million, multi-year initiative to help prepare children from birth to age 5 for success in school and life.




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