By Taylor Dafoe
“Art After Stonewall, 1969–1989,” a landmark show organized by the Columbus Museum of Art and now on view in two parts at the Leslie-Lohman Museum and NYU Grey Art Gallery, seeks to answer these questions. Co-curated by artist and historian Jonathan Weinberg with Tyler Cann and Drew Sawyer, the show brings together 250 works of art made in the two tumultuous decades after the riots. It’s loosely grouped into themes, and brings together both the artists we often associate with this era—Robert Mapplethorpe, David Wojnarowicz, Keith Haring—and many others that we don’t.
“Art After Stonewall” has been a critical hit since it opened in April, and it’s not hard to see why. More than just plotting this moment on the art historical map, it taps into sentiments that remain culturally salient in our current time. “We’re obsessed with autonomy right now,” Weinberg tells artnet News. “People are very anxious and feel like they have no control over their lives, so we look to these moments in time and we see them as a declaration of selfhood.”