Queer Britain is the UK’s first national LGBTQIA+ museum


The all-inclusive and free museum is set to open in Spring 2022

In 2018, Joseph Galliano co-founded Queer Britain with a vision to put forward: to shine a light on the queer communities’ rich and complex histories. He imagined a place for all where, regardless of sexuality or gender identity, everyone is open to discover the profound and diverse history and culture of LGBTQIA+ people throughout the UK and beyond. So, when the team of Queer Britain announced that they will be opening the UK’s first national LGBTQIA+ museum in Spring 2022, the cathartic moment holds a single thought: it’s about damn time.

Art Fund, the UK’s national charity for art, welcomes Queer Britain on its land at 2 Granary Square, London, succeeding The House of Illustration as Art Fund’s tenants. Queer Britain’s lips are sealed, but the team has mentioned that once open, the space will include four galleries, a workshop, an education space, a gift shop, and offices to host them. Queer Britain vows its museum is an inclusive place that welcomes people of all sexuality and gender identity to explore and learn about the past, present, and future stories that the queer community is steeped in.

This is a milestone for the LGBTQIA+ community, and Queer Britain isn’t pulling any punches in reiterating how important it is to make their mark in the 21st century. “Queer people have impacted every part of our culture, yet all too often their lives have been written in the margins of history books. Valuable stories and artifacts are being lost. Once gone, they may never be recovered. These deserve a dedicated space to be preserved, explored, and celebrated. Queer Britain will put this center stage,” their website states.

The trustees of Queer Britain can’t wait to finally have a space to show what queer people can do. “We’re here for all the community, from old lesbian feminist warhorses like me to young queer folk of all genders and ethnicities. Queer Britain aims to tell our many and diverse histories, and now we have a home to do that from,” says Lisa Power.

Anjum Mouj echoes Power’s sentiments, ‘The UK is finally getting the LGBTQIA+ museum it deserves, to reflect and celebrate all our exciting and wildly diverse communities, whatever their sexualities, gender identities, backgrounds, ability, or heritage. Community lives in unity.”

In 2019, Queer Britain partnered with Levi’s and gal-dem magazine for a pop-up LGBTQIA+ museum in London’s Convent Garden. They invited four photographers whose insightful images celebrate the Queer Family life and friendship based on the theme ‘Chosen Family’. Kuba Ryniewicz captured a topless couple who just finished working on their lawn and was putting their tools back into their transparent shed. Robert Taylor showed a group of four friends feasting over the potluck on a kitchen table. Bex Day photographed her subject who was lying on the grass with her eyes closed, the nostalgia of coming-of-age movies penetrating the film. Alia Romagnoli introduced the South Asian LGBTQIA+ members through her psychedelic, retro pop-filtered images, the haze clouding the portraits was no match to the pastel power of their makeup, clothes, and backdrops. Today, all these talents and more will be housed and displayed in Queer Britain’s museum.

Galliano says Queer Britain is delighted to have found their first home in Granary Square with Art Fund as its first landlord. The prime location is accessible to swathes of the country, and in a part of town with a rich Queer heritage. As the museum sets to be one of the most important museums to have launched in the UK in recent years, Galliano and his team are more than ready to amplify the queer voices. “It’s time the UK had an LGBTQ+ museum for all.”



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