The organization that puts on Sydney’s annual Mardi Gras festival has announced plans to open its own museum celebrating its history and the history of LGBT Australians.
Sydney's Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras has announced plans to establish a museum to celebrate its history and the history of the struggle for LGBT rights in Australia.
Museum collections relating to the Sydney Mardi Gras already exist in other museums, most notably Sydney’s Powerhouse Museum which has a collection of extravagant costumes, but this is the first time that plans for a dedicated LGBT museum have been announced in Australia.
David Wilson, who will chair a committee to plan for the museum, said the museum would celebrate the LGBT community in Australia’s gains and also highlight where reform was still needed.
‘We want a museum in Sydney celebrating the journey of Mardi Gras and our fight for equality within our community, and raising awareness that we are not there yet,’ Wilson said.
‘This would be a fantastic opportunity to showcase Sydney’s history and diversity. One of our first tasks will be to reach out further to other interested LGBTQI history groups to help move the project forward.’
Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras chair Peter Urmson said the museum was an exciting initiative.
‘We hope to one day have a permanent Museum dedicated to the history of Mardi Gras,’ Urmson said.
‘Our vision is to have a place where we can educate and break down barriers through presenting our history. Next year is our 35th anniversary. It is our intention to have a temporary museum and gauge community support for the concept.’
Only two permanent LGBTI museums exist in the world currently - the Schwules Museum in Berlin and the LGBT Historical Society Museum in San Francisco.
Current committee members include Peter Urmson, Steve Warren, Mark Gray, Nick Henderson, Adam Bold, Robin Bayes, Samantha Lawrence, Clive Faro, Victor Cabello and Benedict Brook. The committee is currently investigating possible Oxford Street locations as well as other options such as a combined workshop/museum.
If you are based in Sydney and would like to be involved in this initiative in a volunteer capacity please contact David Wilson on firstname.lastname@example.org