Reading Room is a collection of library and archive material and an open discussion group exploring gay histories, identities, protests and prejudices
Compiled of text books, videos, music, flyers and posters the archive of material was initially formed through the development of UHC’s EXAM project, where 20 representatives from Lancashire’s diverse LGBT community assisted in the creation of a GCSE style exam paper exploring gay history and culture.The intention of the exam paper was to celebrate neglected LGBT stories and histories. Using the standardised GCSE exam format the history and culture of LGBT communities was temporarily moved into the mainstream countering the effects of section 28. Over the last 8 months Reading Room has been hosting regular meetings where a small group of individuals have continued to discuss the themes and topics explored in EXAM in a relaxed cocktail and cupcake fuelled atmosphere.
Bringing his archive of material to the Mill, Joseph will be exhibiting the collection of resources for the first time and looking to expand the current network of Reading Room participants
Exploring the aesthetics of libraries, archives and cabinets of curiosity Joseph will present the material in a participatory reading group, where visitors will be free to spend time with the material, rifling through the range of articles, books, and posters. Accompanying the installation Joseph will host a Reading Room evening on the 25th of August discussing the theme of Gay Music History with a presentation on Manchester’s MDMArchive discussing the history of queer music. The discussion will be followed by music in the Mill bar from 8.30pm onwards.