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Through the Lens of Proud Lovers

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Two events celebrating LGBTQ+ pride at the House of European History

Every year, the International LGBTQ+ Pride Day is celebrated on June 28. During Pride Day, different marches and collective events are organised around the world to make the fight for equality and dignity of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people visible. The day commemorates the riots that occurred in 1969 in Stonewall, in New York City’s Greenwich Village neighbourhood.

The House of European History is organising two events on the afternoon of Saturday June 4, to celebrate LBGTQ+ pride and explore how, half a century after the Stonewall Revolt, different EU member states react to the global LGBTQ+ movements. The events will also examine whether justice has prevailed, and to what extent equal rights are being enjoyed since the Revolt.

  • 14:00-15:00 - Through the Lens of Proud Lovers since 1850

Americans Hugh Nini, 67, and Neal Treadwell, 55, started collecting photographs of romantically involved men about 20 years ago on a Sunday after church in Dallas, TX. While they were antique shopping, Neal started going through a shoebox with old photographs and, as he was flipping through them, he noticed one of a male couple in a loving embrace.

They never thought they’d find another one. However, six months later, they stumbled onto their second photo and over the years, they have collected hundreds of such photographs taken between the years 1850 and 1950 when male partnerships were often illegal. Hugh and Neal found their photos at flea markets, in shoe boxes, family archives, old suitcases, and later online and at auctions. Their collection now includes photos from all over the world: Australia, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, France, Germany, Japan, Greece, Latvia, the United States, the United Kingdom, Russia, and Serbia.

On Saturday, June 4 from 14:00 to 15:00, Hugh and Neal will speak about their experiences and reflect on collecting these unique memories.

  • 15:30-16:30 - Through the Lens of Proud Lovers in Central and Eastern Europe

Romanian gay rights activist Florin Buhuceanu, will speak about LGBTQ+ pride in Central and Eastern Europe.

Buhuceanu, former director and current vice president of ACCEPT, Romania's largest LGBTQ+ rights organisation, will explore the roots of Pride events in Romania and the role these events play in bringing visibility to an often-invisible minority. He will discuss how the LGBTQ+ community has used many ways to increase its visibility in society and will analyse why these efforts are important for the ongoing struggle for recognition and equality for the community.

Buhuceanu will also explore the cost of visibility and explain why European citizens should understand and care about the destructive practice of trying to regulate the existence of a group.

Register for this hybrid event

During the twin event, which is part of the House of European History’s series Through the lens of..., the museum will play recorded statements by Polish MEP, Robert Biedroń, and Austrian MP, Yannick Shetty.