This February sees Camden & Islington LGBT History Month present the UK’s largest LGBT arts and culture festival designed to entertain, provoke and inspire. The month kicks off on Thursday (1 Feb) with the unveiling of an Islington People’s Plaque to film director and queer activist Derek Jarman. Here are some more highlights.
Marking 51 years since the decriminalisation of homosexuality in the UK, LGBT History Month creates a platform to recognise both the progress of and struggle for equality, shown through the creative LGBT community’s artists, writers, entertainers and commentators.
Taking the theme ‘Geography: Mapping the LGBT World’, this year’s History Month will showcase LGBT voices from around the world in poetry, film, art, stories and historical artefacts. Most events are free.
In Camden & Islington, 40 events are open to LGBT people and their friends. The month kicks off on Thursday (1 Feb) with the unveiling of an Islington People’s Plaque to film director and queer activist Derek Jarman (1942-1994) at 60 Liverpool Road, N1.
Throughout the month, Islington Museum (245 St John Street, EC1V 4NB) hosts a small display celebrating Derek Jarman’s life in Islington and beyond.
Camden LGBT Forum Director Bettina Ratcliffe said: “The boroughs of Camden & Islington have long been known for their radical thought and revolutionary social ideas – we have captured these in our LGBT History Month Programme which is the biggest and best LGBT themed arts programme in the UK.
“Throughout February, Camden & Islington LGBT History Month welcomes LGBTQ people and their friends to join us to celebrate, discuss and think about the contribution we have made to cultural and artistic life throughout the world.”
LGBT History Month’s opening week also sees the return of Loudest Whispers – London’s Art Exhibition for the LGBT community – now in its 9th year. Thirty-seven artists depict our ever changing world, with its upheavals, shifting political ideas and reliance on technology that is our reality today. A preview will be opened by the Mayor of Camden on 2 February at The Conference Centre, St Pancras Hospital, 4 St Pancras Way, NW1.
Other highlights include:
– North London boozer Central Station celebrates its 26th birthday on 3 February with free prosecco and canapés from 9pm. Proceeds go to Central London Samaritans.
– Known as ‘the Yorkshire Brokeback Mountain’, the film God’s Own Country is being shown on 12 February from 6.30pm at the Hugh Cubitt Centre, 48 Collier Street, N1.
– Poetry gets out and proud at INCITE@The Phoenix on Wednesday 14 February from 7pm at the Phoenix Artist Club, 1 Phoenix Street, WC2.
– The stories of LGBTQI+ migrants are revealed in ‘Rainbow Pilgrims: The Rites and Passages of LGBTQI Migrants in Britain’ on Thursday 15 February from 6pm at The Wiener Library, 29 Russell Square, WC1.
– Islington Pride – A Guided Walkthrough: 50 Years of LGBT History takes place on Saturday 17 February at 2pm and Sunday 25 February at 11am starting from Angel Tube Station. Book at ciga.org.uk.
– Exploring LGBTQ histories at the British Museum is on Thursday 22 February from 3pm in the Stevenson Lecture Theatre at the British Museum, Great Russell Street, WC1. Book via firstname.lastname@example.org.