Lesbian Art Herstory: The Lesbian Art Project and GALAS

January 28, 2014

The Lesbian Art Project (or LAP) was founded by art historian Arlene Raven in 1977 as a project of the Woman’s Building, a feminist art organization she had co-founded. She wanted to conduct art historical research about lesbian artists. She was joined by a group of her students (Kathleen Berg, Nancy Fried, Sharon Immergluck, Maya Sterling, and Terry Wolverton) who called themselves the Natalie Barney Collective and who expanded the scope of the project to include art projects, educational workshops and events. In 1978 and 1979, the project was co-directed by Raven and Wolverton.
In her book Insurgent Muse: Life and Art at the Woman’s Building (City Lights Publishers 2002) Terry Wolverton gives a very personal and heartfelt narration of her work with The Lesbian Art Project, an endeavor which she describes as “consisting of equal parts art historical research, community building, activism, group therapy, heavy partying, and the kind of life-as-art performance sensibility inherited from the Fluxus artists and so prevalent in Southern California art of the 1970s.”

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