Posted: 11th November 2020
Our digital exhibition, Pride In Our City, launched on 25 July 2020.
Visit the exhibition – click here!
In order to develop our digital exhibition and tell the story of Pride in our city, we worked closely with colleagues at Yorkshire MESMAC and Pride in Hull. We were mindful that we wanted to capture lived experience and provide a space for our local communities and audiences to share their own voices. Providing an authentic experience for all was an important goal for us.
However, the Pride In Our City project didn’t start with this exhibition, we began work way back in early 2019 by acknowledging that LGBTQ+ narratives were under-represented in our collections, interpretation and delivery here at Hull Museums. We began by organising staff training and by discussing what stories we should be telling and considering how to tell them. You can read more about this in our previous diary blog posts – click here!
We then started researching our collections and the local LGBTQ+ history of Hull, uncovering stories that we were excited to share within the museums and Ferens Art Gallery – in temporary exhibitions, and our permanent displays too! We teamed up with The University of Hull and the history department to research our collections further, with some of the students writing excellent blogs on historical icons and exploring the heteronormative view of history from the modern day.
The overwhelming success of the Pride In Our City digital exhibition and the partnerships we have built have been a great motivator for us to continue this project. We continue to move forward, with research being our current priority. We are currently exploring what the LGBTQ+ history of Hull looks like and how we can share these interesting and valid narratives. Such narratives have often been hidden or erased from museums, which have previously omitted or overlooked LGBTQ+ histories. We are committed to addressing this imbalance and will be using this important research to help us fairly represent the LGBTQ+ history of Hull, using our collections as a tool to share these narratives.
Pride in Our City is an ongoing project so we can actively change the way we have previously shared narratives and engaged with our audiences. We want to offer new experiences, encouraging discussion, self-expression, and new perspectives whilst challenging preconceptions. Representing our local communities honestly being at the forefront of our minds throughout.
So, watch this space, we have some exciting things planned. We will be hosting workshops, exploring our collections further and maybe even trying out some new ways of bringing this project directly to you at home!
2020 hasn’t been a great year, but by working together we were able to create something great in the Pride In Our City digital exhibition. We are hopeful that we can continue to build on this work and maintain the great connections we have already made, whilst building new ones. Building these positive relationships with local communities will help us to ensure that Hull Museums is a place for everyone to enjoy.
Keep an eye on our social media for further announcements in the coming months, but in the meantime, if you know of a LGBTQ+ history that we should be sharing at Hull Museums or the Ferens Art Gallery please do send us an email and let us know – PrideInOurCity@gmail.co.uk
Image copyright – Nick Evans