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Violet Ghosts

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  Acclaimed queer authors Trebor Healey and Craig Laurance Gidney explore the veil between worlds in their newest books, Falling and A Spectral Hue. These are stories of artists making contact with a metaphysical or mystical reality, expanding and queering our understanding of the world we live in. Healey and Gidney’s work portrays the otherworldliness [...]

Fri. Oct 18, 2019 7:00 PM


June 26, 2015

Opening reception: Hunter Reynolds and Maxine Henryson: I-Dea The Goddess Within Gay Pride 1994

Hunter Reynolds and Maxine Henryson

I-Dea The Goddess Within

Gay Pride 1994

June 18 to September 6, 2015

Bureau of General Services—Queer Division

@The LGBT Community Center

208 West 13th Street, Room 210

New York, NY 10011


Opening Reception on Friday, June 26, 7 to 10 PM


The Bureau of General Services—Queer Division is pleased to present a selection of iconic photographs from I-DEA, The Goddess Within, a historic collaboration of the performance artist Hunter Reynolds, aka Patina du Prey, and documentary photographer Maxine Henryson. From 1993 to 2000, Henryson and Reynolds traveled to Berlin, Antwerp, Los Angeles, New York and other cities, creating guerrilla-like street performances and interventions. Spinning in a large white dress, Patina existed as a mythical dervish figure that deliberately disrupted gender norms in order to relate to the viewer as a shamanistic transgendered embodiment of fantasy and healing. I-DEA, The Goddess Within challenged notions of queer identity, performance art, and the social landscape of the 1990’s.


For this exhibition, the artists will present a selection of photographs from Gay Pride in New York on the 25th anniversary of Stonewall and the Gay Games in 1994. The years of 1993 and 1994 were two of the most devastating years of the AIDS epidemic. During this anniversary year there was a dispute between the organizers of the Pride Parade (Heritage of Pride), Mayor Giuliani, and the political activists participating in the annual parade, such as ACT UP, the Dykes on Bikes, and the Radical Faeries, who did not want to participate in the commercial marketing of the Gay Games or the changing of the Parade route to pass by the United Nations.  The LGBTQ parade, for the first time, split into two parades: the official parade and the Radical Queers parade. The Dykes on Bikes led some 60,000 Radical Queers and Faeries from the Stonewall Inn up 5th Ave to Central Park. Many of the participants were naked and queers jerked off in front of St Patrick’s Cathedral. The community was fractured; the oppression of Giuliani era was beginning, and our parade was split.

Since 1992, Reynolds had been living in Berlin and returned to perform the Memorial Dress for Creative Time’s official Gay Games Art Event.  Reynolds recalls that “I wanted to do a healing dervish dance on the steps of the NYPL under the pink triangle of the banner Becoming Visible: The Legacy of Stonewall, The New York Public Library’s groundbreaking 1994 exhibition, which was the largest and most extensive display of lesbian and gay history ever mounted in a museum or gallery space. It was spontaneous combustion. The parade stopped and thousands cheered. The naked Radical Faeries spun with me. It was a truly spectacular and moving moment in my life. I was so grateful to be alive and proud to be Queer.”


Hunter Reynolds has been using photography, performance and installation for over thirty years to express his experience as an HIV-positive gay man. He was an early member of ACT UP, and in 1989 co-founded Art Positive, an affinity group of ACT UP, to fight homophobia and censorship in the arts. His work addresses issues of gender, identity, socio-politics, sexual histories, mourning, loss, survival, hope and healing.  Hunter Reynolds was born in 1959 in Rochester, Minnesota.  Reynolds is an AIDS activist and a Visual AIDS artist member and has been the recipient of grants and residencies, including several Pollock Krasner awards.  He has had numerous solo exhibitions including: Iceberg Projects, IL; P.P.O.W Gallery, NY; Participant Inc., NY; Hallwalls, NY; White Columns, NY; Artist Space, NY; Simon Watson Gallery, NY; Creative Time, NY; Momenta, NY; Bernard Toale Gallery, MA; ICA Boston, MA; Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, CA; NGBK, Germany; and DOCUMENTA, Kassel, Germany. His work is numerous public and private collections including The Society for Contemporary Art Chicago, IL; Yale University Art Gallery, CT; the Addison Gallery of American Art, MA and The Stamp Gallery at the University of Maryland, MD. The Fales Library and Special Collections/New York University houses the archives of Hunter Reynolds in its Downtown Collection. Hunter Reynolds is represented by P.P.O.W. For more information about the artist please contact: info@ppowgallery.com


Maxine Henryson is an artist and bookmaker who creates sensual, poetic photographs of the seemingly every day. She explores perceptions of the feminine in the world, examining the differences and similarities between cultures. Her work traces evidence of divinity, rituals, place, memory and history in the West and East.

Born in Jackson, Mississippi, she lives and works in New York. She studied sociology at Simmons College (B.S.) and University of London (Masters of Philosophy) and has an M.A.T. from the University of Chicago in studio arts and M.F.A. from the University of Illinois at Chicago in photography. Her photographs have been widely exhibited in the United States and Europe and are in numerous public and private collections including the Celanese Photography Collection, the Russian Museum, Norton Museum of Art, and the Middlebury College Museum of Art. Selected group exhibitions include ARC Gallery, Chicago (The Body in Revue), Gallery Espace, New Delhi (Marvelous Reality/Lo Real Maravilloso), Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, New York (Lives of the Hudson), Unscharf (out of focus), after Gerhard Richter at the Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg Germany and O.K. Harris Gallery, New York (Illuminators). Her most recent solo exhibitions were at A.I.R. Gallery, Brooklyn in 2014 (Ujjayi’s Journey.) and Kleinschmidt Fine Photographs, Wiesbaden, Germany. (Calculated Coincidence). Maxine Henryson taught photography at the International Center of Photography, New York, and Bennington College (1996-2006). Henryson’s artist books are Ujjayai’s Journey (Kehrer, 2012), Red Leaves and Golden Curtains (Kehrer, 2007) and Presence (Artist Publications, 2003). Henryson is represented by A.I.R. Gallery, Brooklyn.



Start: June 26, 2015 7:00 PM
End: June 26, 2015 10:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services—Queer Division @ The Center
Phone: 212 620 7310 ext. 300
208 West 13th Street, Room 210, New York, NY, 10011, United States
Cost: Free

June 24, 2015

Rainbow Book Fair Readings: Lammy Winners 2015


Before we say goodbye to June and Pride, let’s take a couple more hours to celebrate the winners of the 2015 Lambda Literary Awards with some of the winners who live right here in New York City. Readers will include Diana Cage, author of Lesbian Sex Bible: The New Guide to Sexual Love for Same-Sex Couples (winner for Lesbian Erotica), as well as Whitney Strub, a contributor to Understanding and Teaching U.S. Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender History (winner for LGBT Anthology) and some still to be determined guests.


Diana Cage

Diana Cage was editor of the lesbian magazine On Our Backs and host of The Diana Cage Show on SiriusXM Radio. Her work has appeared in Curve, Girlfriends, Quartz, Shewired, The Advocate, Esquire, and other publications. She lives in Brooklyn and teaches writing at Pratt Institute.



Whitney Strub is an associate professor of History and director of the Women’s & Gender Studies program at Rutgers University-Newark. He is the author of Perversion for Profit: The Politics of Pornography and the Rise of the New Right (Columbia, 2011) and Obscenity Rules: Roth v. United States and the Long Struggle over Sexual Expression (Kansas, 2013).


Start: June 24, 2015 7:00 PM
End: June 24, 2015 10:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services—Queer Division @ The Center
Phone: 212 620 7310 ext. 300
208 West 13th Street, Room 210, New York, NY, 10011, United States
Cost: Free

June 21, 2015

Deeply Leisured with Queenie Bon Bon


DEEPLY LEISURED is a hybrid performance that spans the genres of stand up comedy, performance, lecture, and consciousness-raising story telling. Queenie Bon Bon presents narratives detailing her deep love for her clients & coworkers, and the eternal joys and mysteries of working with bodies. She also shares stories on coming out as a sex worker to her mother, whorephobia and internet dating, and tips on covering up when you peed on the carpet at your workplace. A tender and true look into her lived experience as a sex worker, coworker  solidarity, as well as social and political issues surrounding sex work, DEEPLY LEISURED is a performance full of intrigue and inspiration.

Suggested donation $5 to $15

Deeply Leisured premiered at Melbourne Fringe Festival and has since showed at Sydney’s infamous queer warehouse performance venue The Red Rattler, Hares and Hyenas Queer Bookshop as part of Scarlett Alliance’s National Sex Worker Forum, at Adelaide Fringe Festival and has also been performed as a fundraiser for the English prostitute’s collective in London. Queenie Bon Bon is an up and coming political comedic writer and performer.  Aside from performing Deeply Leisured, she has done readings on the delights of being human furniture, fragmented realities  and talked panels about the importance of decriminalisation and myth busting. Queenie is part of the Debbie’s (Australian sex worker art collective) and has spent several years working on a sex worker oral story telling archival project, and is now writing her first novel. Queenie has worked as a  dancer, in massage parlours and in brothels over Australia as well as in the UK.



Start: June 21, 2015 6:00 PM
End: June 21, 2015 9:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services—Queer Division @ The Center
Phone: 212 620 7310 ext. 300
208 West 13th Street, Room 210, New York, NY, 10011, United States
Cost: Suggested donation of $5 to $15

June 19, 2015

Evening with West Village writer Kate Walter reading from her debut memoir: Looking for a Kiss: A Chronicle of Downtown Heartbreak and Healing (Heliotrope Books)

Journalist and professor Kate Walter reads from her debut memoir: Looking for a Kiss: A Chronicle of Downtown Heartbreak and Healing (Heliotrope Books)
Reception at 7

Reading at 7:30
How long does it take to get over heartache? Journalist and teacher Kate Walter wondered if she’d ever feel whole again after her long term lesbian partnership ended.
A resident of Greenwich Village who spent years recording neighborhood life, Walter now releases her debut memoir Looking for a Kiss: A Chronicle of Downtown Heartbreak and Healing (Heliotrope Books, June 2015).
Dedicated to “women who have been dumped after 25 years,” Walter’s memoir describes her broke, brokenhearted state after being left by her partner of two decades. While many older women—gay and straight—experience divorce, Walter’s was more stressful since she was not legally married. But rather than dwelling in regret, Looking for Kiss carries a universal message about loss and recovery: you can heal your life and land up in a better place.
With brave and revealing details, Walter confesses her grief and rage and questions her past choices. Seeking answers and spiritual solace, she joins a gay-positive church, visits psychics, throws herself into yoga and chanting, and starts dating again at 60.
Like the urban landscape that serves as her backdrop, Walter’s fast-paced dialogue has a raspy realness and soulful edge. She describes loneliness and longing with humorous and poetic prose. Anyone seeking hope will cheer this funny, gutsy narrator who loses love but finds herself.


Kate Walter has been living in downtown Manhattan since 1975 when she escaped across the river from New Jersey. Her essays and opinion pieces have appeared in the New York Times, Newsday, New York Daily News, AM-NY, the Advocate and many other outlets. She teaches writing at CUNY and NYU





Start: June 19, 2015 7:00 PM
End: June 19, 2015 7:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services—Queer Division @ The Center
Phone: 212 620 7310
208 West 13th Street, Room 210, New York, NY, 10011, United States
Cost: Free

June 14, 2015

Bureau Book Club Discusses Larry Kramer’s The American People, Volume 1: Search for My Heart


Join us for a discussion of Larry Kramer’s The American People, Volume 1: Search for My Heart

Larry Kramer’s first novel, Faggots, shocked a generation with its Swiftian indictment of ’70s clone sex culture on the West Side and Fire Island. His play The Normal Heart, a searing polemic against apathy and evil set during the outbreak of the HIV/AIDS pandemic, has moved generations of audiences. For thirty years, he’s been at work on a multi-thousand-page epic attempting to situate queers at the center of American history. It takes us from Abraham Lincoln orgies to monkeys swapping AIDS before the dawn of human civilization, from a Jewish family outside Washington, DC to secret Nazi camps in North Dakota. Lawrence D. Mass, co-founder of Gay Men’s Health Crisis, says the book demands a reconsideration of “nothing less than the entirety of [American] history, calling it “Eloquent, powerful, epochal, defiant, relentlessly in your face and tough as shit on everyone and everything.” Volume 1 is ready. Are you?


The book was released April 5, and due to its length – 775 pages – we’re holding our discussion June 14. Buy it anytime at the Bureau. Don’t feel you need to have finished – or started – the book to join us. Stay tuned for news about possible special guests!


The discussion will be moderated by Ben Miller, a writer and researcher in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Learn more about him at benwritesthings.com, he tweets @benwritesthings

“He’s been struggling with this history for many years…How much did he find out? How much shame and horror at all that was and is being enacted and endured? Shame for whom?…He decides to finally belly up to this assignment on that day when he hears the President refer to ‘The American People’ and realizes that the president of the United States is not talking about him or his people, and that he, Fred Lemish, had best do something about it.” – the opening lines of The American People


Start: June 14, 2015 6:00 PM
End: June 14, 2015 9:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services—Queer Division @ The Center
Phone: 646 457 0859
208 West 13th Street, Room 210, New York, NY, 10011, United States
Cost: Free