Sonoma State University decided to make a new addition to their library art gallery for the 2019 Fall semester. It was announced that the new art exhibit would be a new multimedia display. That is intended to pay tribute to the 50th anniversary of the historic Stonewall Uprising and the effect it had upon future generations of LGBTQ+, and how it helped create a significant turning point in the modern gay rights movement, not only in the United States but around the rest of the world.
The multimedia art display is open to the public from Aug. 19 to Dec. 13 and is located on the second floor of the Schultz Library here at Sonoma State University. The display has been named "Queeries: Queer Artists & Identity."Along with commemorating the Stonewall Riots, the art display is also intended to help celebrate the progress of queer and LGBTQ+ culture, and take a more in-depth look into gender and performance art.
The New multimedia exhibit will include contributions from many local and Bay Area artists that include names such as Jerome Caja, Jeffrey Cheung, and Jeremy Novy. Along with these original works, the exhibit will also showcase print photos from the Queer Ancestors Project, which is devoted to helping create strong relations between the LGBTQ+ community and their ancestors.
Mary Wegmann, who is the head chairman of the Sonoma State Library Art Committee, said: "All of the artists participating in the exhibit are and continue to do great work. Sonoma State is very excited to participate in a show celebrating queer identity on a college campus".
Along with the new multimedia art project, Sonoma State also gave the green light on a new interactive walking tour here on campus. Funding for the new walking tour was donated by the Jean and Charles Shultz foundation and the Sonoma State Department of Women's and Gender studies.
For the project, Sonoma State joined forces with renowned Bay Area artist Seth Eisen. Eisen, who specializes in making art that combines live performance and visual media/art teamed up to work alongside Sonoma State University Professor Don Romesburg to create a "performative and interactive tour here at Sonoma State University."
Professor Romesburg, who currently teaches an LGBTQ US history course, which is the first of its kind here at Sonoma State, said: "History education is all about training future citizens. By incorporating LGBT history into what our students learn, they're really learning how to be better citizens for our diverse society in California".
As well, Sonoma State University Provost Lisa Vollendorf showed her excitement for the new curriculum enhancement as she said: "Here At Sonoma State University we are proud to support the integration of the arts into the curriculum and with our campus programming."
To many students at Sonoma State, the new art exhibit is one that has created a lot of buzz and excitement. Current Sonoma State Senior said "I think the new multimedia exhibit will be a great addition to the University for the fall. But even more than that I think that it will help a lot of the study body to become more/better informed about the LGBTQ community itself."
Lewis also went on to say "I'm happy that Sonoma State has decided to make a strong effort to educate more people on LGBTQ history, as I think it's really never something you ever have seen get covered in history classes."