Two NYC galleries present Queer Love: Affection & Romance in Contemporary Art

Explorations of intimate queer relationships by 48 LGBTQIA+ artists are currently on show at a two-part New York exhibition at Lehman College Art Gallery in the Bronx and La MaMa Galleria in Lower Manhattan. Queer Love: Affection & Romance in Contemporary Art presents paintings, photographs, sculpture, video, and multimedia works that celebrate queer carnality, camaraderie, and passion and offer visions of vulnerability, tenderness, and desire in a community of affirming LGBTQIA+ people. Lehman’s artistic partnership with La MaMa Galleria, an organization with a long and rich history of queer programming, links this project to the broader community. Main image above: Rakeem Cunningham. Togetherness (2018).

Samantha Nye. DADDY 4th verse. Queer Love: Affection & Romance in Contemporary Art.

Depicting cheerful and romantic expressions of love as well as non-traditional nuclear families, the artists highlight the bonds between themselves as creators and those with whom they have personal ties. Often moving from depicting their own loves to proclaiming a place for queer people within a larger society, their art creates a series of nuanced and reflective narratives of love’s transformative impact on both the human experience and the artistic process.

ggggrimes. Strapped. Queer Love: Affection & Romance in Contemporary Art.

Bronx-based artist Paco Cao, who designed a site-specific piece for Queer Love, draws on a Valentine’s Day poem written by Charles W. Leslie that he dedicated to Fritz Lohman, his life partner, and with whom he co-founded the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art. The poem encapsulates the power of love that shapes the exhibition:

Paco Cao. Love Is Love (2003). Matte Vinyl. Queer Love: Affection & Romance in Contemporary Art.

The works also focus on the impact of these relationships on family members and friends. They point out the cultural shift towards positive queer representations across racial, age, religious, class, and gender identities.

Harris Singer. In a Turkish Bath when the blond & naked angel came to pierce them with a sword. Queer Love: Affection & Romance in Contemporary Art.

Artists include: Ruven Afanador, Lizzie Alexander, Patrick Arias, Lex Barberio, Mark Beard, James Bidgood, Adriana Elena Bravo Morales, Elliott Jerome Brown, Jr., Paco Cao, Luis Carle, Vincent Chong, Jayne County, David Antonio Cruz, Rakeem Cunningham, Betsy Damon, Anabelle De Clement, Jess T. Dugan, C. Finley, Michael Fox, Gabriel Garcia Roman, Christy Gast, Sunil Gupta, Zach Grear, ggggrimes, Barbara Hammer, Clifford Prince King, Tommy Kha, Zachary Logan, Jessica Mitrani, Cobi Moules, Raúl de Nieves, Samantha Nye, Tura Oliveira, Sola Olulode, Catherine Opie, David Rios Ferreira & Neil Fernando, Gabriel Garcia Roman, Paul Mpagi Sepuya, Xavier Schipani, Emily Shur, Gerald Simcoe, Sophie Schwartz, Harris Singer, Alix Smith, A.L. Steiner, Hank Willis Thomas, Federico Uribe, and Rachael Warner.

Luis Carle. Folsom Street, East. Caution Kiss. Queer Love: Affection & Romance in Contemporary Art.

The exhibition, curated by Bartholomew F. Bland, is accompanied by an illustrated commemorative catalog with an essay by Alex Jovanovich.

Queer Love: Affection & Romance in Contemporary Art runs at Lehman College Art Gallery until April 28th, 2023 (free reservations required at and La MaMa Galleria until April 6th, 2023, visit for more details.

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