To coincide with pride weekend, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that artist Anthony Goicolea had been chosen to design the first official monument to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people to be commissioned by the State of New York. According to the New York Times, the statue will be built near the waterfront piers in Hudson River Park. The monument’s design features nine boulders bisected in places with glass, which can act as a prism, emitting a rainbow pattern. Governor Cuomo formed the LGBT Memorial Commission after the deadly attack at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla. in 2016; A request for designs for a new memorial went out in October of this year. Hudson River Park’s waterfront piers have figured prominently in the history of the city’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
Last June, President Obama formally recognized Greenwich Village’s Stonewall Inn and its surrounding area as a national historic monument, creating the first National Park Service unit dedicated to the gay rights movement. To expand the reach of this monument, Senator Chuck Schumer announced on Sunday a $1 million grant from Google to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center to begin a project preserving the oral histories and human experiences from early LGBTQ leaders present during the Stonewall Inn riots. According to the New York Times, the initiative will create an educational curriculum for students and a digital platform that’s expected to launch by the 50th anniversary of the protests in 2019.
To broaden people’s knowledge of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community’s history in New York City, the NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project created a map-based online archive to document significant sites throughout the five boroughs. Although earlier maps highlighting LGBT history have been created, they focused solely on the history of Greenwich Village, the hub of gay activism. But the new interactive map, based on 25 years of research and advocacy, hopes to make “invisible history visible” by exploring sites across the city related to everything from theater and architecture to social activism and health.
Following the 2013 Supreme Court ruling that struck down the Defense of Marriage Act and the 2015 ruling that upheld the decision, gay and lesbian couples across the United States have had a lot to celebrate. After years of struggle, gays and lesbians now have the right to marry and along with it, the right to claim benefits long extended to married heterosexual couples. However, as many LGBT activists have pointed out, on other fronts—including housing—the struggle for equal rights continues, even in a city as diverse as New York.
We’re right in the middle of NYC Pride Week, and this Sunday will be filled with festivities surrounding the 45th annual Pride Parade, the largest parade of its kind in the world. And in a perfectly timed decision, the Landmarks Preservation Commission announced on Tuesday that it had designated the Stonewall Inn as the city’s first LGBT landmark. The LPC now has even more to share, releasing a fun new interactive map called Taking Pride, which documents 150 years of LGBTQ history in Greenwich Village, the hub for gay activism in the city, and even the world.
- Summer Streets Is Here!: Time to break out the bike and ride the open roads. Summer Streets closes down streets in Brooklyn and Manhattan for biking, zip-lining, running, yoga and other activities. Find out where to find the annual program at The New York Times.
- LGBT Barbershop Coming To Crown Heights: DNAinfo reports that hair stylist, Khane Kutzwell, plans to open a barbershop that also doubles as a safe space for LGBT to come, hang out and get a haircut in a non-judgmental atmosphere. Click through to read more and help fund her Indiegogo campaign.
- A Tree Grows in Ground Zero: Narratively’s short video tells the moving story of one Cleveland Callery pear tree that refused to be broken when it was buried in the rubble at Ground Zero.
- Would You Live In Damien Hirst’s Community?: Because once you’ve done it all, what else is there to do? The richest living artist is now planning an eco-community in the British country. Find out how
notsustainable this project is over at PSFK.
Images: left – Video screenshot from Narratively; right – DNAinfo