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Making History, Making Art: The Work of Jonathan Ned Katz
Curated by Jonathan David Katz (the two Katzes are not related)
Opening: Friday, February 15, 2013, 6-8 pm. Reception for Jonathan Ned Katz, Artist/Historian: Saturday, February 16, 2013, 6-8 pm. Continues through March 31, 2013
Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art
26 Wooster Street, between Grand and Canal
New York, NY 10013
Making History, Making Art: The Work of Jonathan Ned Katz, at the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art in New York City (2/15/13 – 3/31/13) will be the first solo show to highlight the visual art of the groundbreaking gay historian Jonathan Ned Katz, whose artistic talent has not received public attention. The same month that Katz celebrates his seventy-ﬁfth birthday, this exhibit will retrace the creative career of this late-emerging visual artist. This exhibit underscores the inherent social-historical content of art by illustrating how profoundly a shifting political landscape remade the ﬁeld for representing sexual difference.
Making History, Making Art will demonstrate the importance of visual art over the course of Jonathan Ned Katz’s life, including samples of the remarkable art he produced as a child (Pop Art before Pop Art), teen, and young man. The show will focus on Katz’s recent paintings of men, praised by his curator for their “passion, sensuality and immediacy.”
Before he was a historian, Katz was an art major at New York’s public High School of Music and Art. As a young man, he supported himself as a textile designer. At the Jack Prince Studio, he worked with designers who went on to make names for themselves as fine artists, among them Paul Thek, Joseph Raffael, and Carolyn Brady.
“As a historian,” says his curator, “Jonathan Ned Katz’s Gay American History: Lesbians and Gay Men in the U.S.A. (1976), and The Invention of Heterosexuality (1995), powerfully contributed to the new public understanding of gay and lesbian people as an oppressed minority. The direct beneﬁciary of Katz the historian is Katz the artist, and we are the direct beneficiaries of Katz the artist.”
In conjunction with his show, Jonathan Ned Katz is publishing Coming of Age in Greenwich Village: A Memoir with Paintings, detailing the familial and cultural context that led him to visual art and history, and presenting samples of his art. Jonathan David Katz provides a Foreword. The book will be or sale at the Museum and online at: http://www.blurb.com/bookstore.
With this show, Jonathan Ned Katz returns as a visual artist to the street on which his research on gay and lesbian history was first presented, 41 years earlier, inaugurating his career as a historian of sexuality. That research appeared in Katz’s documentary play, “Coming Out!”, produced by the Gay Activists Alliance, in its SOHO firehouse, 99 Wooster Street, in 1972.
On Saturday, February 16, at 4 pm, Jonathan Ned Katz and Jonathan David Katz will participate in a panel discussion at the Leslie-Lohman Museum moderated by the curators of Rare & Raw, Steph Rogerson and Kelly McCray, with the artists Nina Levitt and Ken Moffatt. Click here for more information.
About the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art
Best place for gay culture, Time Out New York: New York’s Best 2012
The Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art is the first and only dedicated LGBT art museum in the world with a mission to exhibit and preserve LGBT art, and foster the artists who create it. The Museum has a permanent collection of over 22,000 objects, 6-8 major exhibitions annually, artist talks, film screenings, readings, THE ARCHIVE – a quarterly art newsletter, a membership program, and a research library. The Leslie-Lohman Museum is operated by the Leslie/Lohman Gay Art Foundation, a non-profit founded in 1987 by Charles W. Leslie and Fritz Lohman who have supported LGBT artists for over 30 years. The Leslie-Lohman Museum embraces the rich creative history of the LGBT art community by informing, inspiring, entertaining and challenging all who enter its doors.
The Museum is located at 26 Wooster Street, in the SoHo neighborhood of New York City. Admission is free, and hours are 12pm-6pm Tuesday through Sunday. The Museum is closed Monday and all major holidays. The Museum can be reached at 212-431-2609. For more information, go to LeslieLohman.org.
We Two Boys (Homage to Walt Whitman and David Hockney, 2012, Glitter glue, artists’ tape, tempera, acrylic on canvas, 60 x 36 in.
Self-portrait in Pajamas, c. 1954, Oil on canvas board, 23 3/4 x 18 in.
Benjamin with Turban, Sitting, n.d., Tempera, colored pencil on paper, 12 1/2 x 19 5/8 in.
Two Men Hugging, n.d, Tempera, glitter glue, pencil on paper, 25 ½ x 19 5/8 in.