The Sexuality Spectrum offers a groundbreaking exploration of sexual orientation through the creativity of over fifty international contemporary artists. Artists including Judy Chicago, Joan Snyder, Arthur Tress, Archie Rand, Albert Winn, Trix Rosen, Joan Roth, and Mark Podwal explore a broad range of subjects: the evolving social and religious attitudes toward sexuality; issues of alienation, marginalization, and inclusion; the impact on the family, child-rearing, and life stages; violence and persecution; AIDS/HIV; and the influence of the LGBTQI community on the Jewish and larger world.
Judy Chicago and Estelle Yarinsky reference Nazi persecution of gay victims during the Holocaust, as documented in Richard Grune’s rare wartime lithograph. Josh Lehrer captures haunting portraits of transgender youths in New York City. Helene Aylon, Susan Kaplow and Trix Rosen expose and refute the Biblical quotes in Leviticus that have engendered discrimination and intolerance, while Archie Rand looks to the Biblical David and Jonathan and prophet and warrior Deborah for other perspectives.
Curator Laura Kruger explained, “The HUC-JIR Museum staff held numerous focus groups with artists, asking them to share their intimate feelings concerning their lives as LGBTQI in the community, including their faith-based experiences. We frequently heard incidents of marginalization, isolation, and exclusion. They shared their long years of concealment as well as the wrenching experience of ‘coming out;’ their relationships with family members, employers, and friendships that disintegrated; and the search for life-long partners.”