Traveling Exhibitions

SNMAL provides traveling exhibitions to libraries, community centers, corporate environments, festivals, and other institutions throughout the United States.

Using its Archives and Library as resources for information, SNMAL is committed to the distribution of historically accurate information that affirms and uplifts the history and culture of LGBTQIA+ people and promotes diversity, equity and inclusion as the means to a pluralistic society.

Exhibitions are delivered as full color digital files and are printed by the borrowing organization.  Except where noted, exhibitions are designed to be printed on exhibition panels which measure 30” by 40” inches.  In most cases, borrowers have the exhibition panels printed on light-weight poster board or thin sheets of plastic.  Gromets can be inserted on the top of each exhibition to assist with installation.  Except where noted, all text is in English.

The basic fee for our exhibitions is $250, though additional fees can be added depending on terms of use.  

Attribution to Stonewall National Museum, Archives, & Library is required.
Stonewall staff is also available to provide a virtual curated tour of the exhibition for your audience.

Exhibition previews may be viewed here. For questions and requests regarding exhibitions, contact

Available exhibitions:
50 Years: The Stonewall Uprising
(18 30”w by 40”h panels)
In June 1969, riots at the Stonewall Inn in New York’s Greenwich Village are generally cited as the starting point of the LGBTQIA+ rights movement, but the facts are considerably more nuanced and even disputed. Then referred to as the Gay and Lesbian Rights Movement, the LGBTQIA+ rights movement had been steadily, if slowly, growing during the 1960s. Arguably, the first widely noted times gay bar patrons fought back against police harassment took place in California years before the Stonewall riots. Media coverage immediately after the Stonewall uprising was minimal. Yet within a year, the first gay pride marches had taken place and gay activist organizations had sprung up. The era of LGBTQIA+ liberation was about to dawn. This exhibition looks at the who, what and where of those June nights in an attempt to understand why the Stonewall riots became the catalytic movement in the effort to secure equal rights for LGBTQIA+ Americans.

Out of the Shadows: A Gay American Timeline
from Police Raids to Stonewall Riots 1903-1969
(9 30” w x 30” h panels)
The ramifications of a new sexual openness that slowly began to emerge in post-WWII America are explored in this exhibition. From the gay enclaves that sprang up in New York, San Francisco and other cities to the founding of the Mattachine Society and Daughters of Bilitis, public expressions of homosexuality during this period were beginning to become more visible. This new openness led politicians, psychiatrists and journalists to define- usually negatively- what it meant to be homosexual. It also triggered a backlash, including “Lavender Panic,” which associated gays with Communism. With the backlash limiting public visibility in dominant popular culture outlets, such as film and television, gays and lesbians sought to express themselves in pulps- mass market paperbacks- and the theater. By the 1960s, gay visibility became more politicized, culminating in the 1969 Stonewall uprising, the birthplace of the modern era of gay and lesbian liberation.

The Harlem Renaissance: As Gay as It Was Black
(21 30″w x 40”h panels)
This exhibition explores homosexuality in Harlem during the artistic movement that defined black culture in the 1920s and 1930s. “You just did what you wanted to do. Nobody was in the closet. There wasn’t any closet,” said artist Bruce Nugent about life in Harlem during the 1920s. The Harlem Renaissance occurred when New York still had laws banning homosexuality. As a result, very few of the artists and writers profiled in this exhibit can be considered “out” or “gay” in any modern sense of the terms. Nonetheless, leading Harlem Renaissance writers from Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston to Angelina Weld Grimke and Nella Larsen encoded their work with homosexual undertones. Sculptor Richmond Barthes used his art as a means of working out internal conflicts related to race and sexuality. And the jazz and blues of countless artists provided homosexual subcultures with expressive styles and social rituals.

Transcending Gender Bodies & Lives
(10 30″w x 40″h panels)
Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people have faced a long history of shared systematic oppression by gender and sexual norms. This exhibit examines ways that gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation intersect. As gender expression, sexual identity and a sense of community are very important facets of LGBTQIA+ culture, the exploration of our similarities and differences can teach us how to support one another so that we may live our lives truly, freely and safely. The LGBTQIA+ community is united by the shared value of every person’s right to a genuine expression of self.

The Orlando 49: Documenting the 2016 Orlando Tragedy and Its Consequences
(6 30″w x 40″h panels in English or 6 30″w x 40″h panels in Spanish)
Geared for middle and high school settings, this education module includes six display panels and a Leader’s Guide. Printed in English and Spanish, the combined materials provide a comprehensive and LGBTQIA+ inclusive examination of this event. The exhibit examines the Pulse Orlando tragedy alongside hate crimes which have occurred to marginalized groups throughout American history. It illustrates the issues uncovered by the event, including discussion of prejudice and hate motivated violence targeted toward race, ethnicity, age, gender and sexuality. The final display panel concludes with discussion questions that address the implications of the Orlando tragedy and addresses themes of intersectionality, multicultural understanding and relationships in today’s school environments. In school environments, this exhibit can be the centerpiece of a single lesson about the tragedy at Pulse in Orlando, or the basis for lengthier study. The panels may be used singly or as a group in Spanish Leader’s Discussion Guide (English)

(4 17″w x 24″h panels)
This exhibit contextualizes the LGBTQIA+ Civil Rights Movement within the larger historical context of Civil Rights struggles throughout United States history. Using an excerpt of President Barack Obama’s 2013 presidential speech as a starting point for discussion, the four-panel exhibit depicts historic photos, landmark-event court rulings, and examples of high-achieving individuals from the ranks of the Women’s Suffrage, African American, and LGBTQIA+ Civil Rights Movements.

Day of Silence
(6 30″w x 40”h panels)
The Day of Silence exhibit seeks to heighten awareness of the issue of school bullying of LGBTQIA+ youth and to stimulate meaningful discussion among and between students, teachers, school staff and parents within any middle or high school. GLSEN’s Day of Silence, held each April since 1996, is a student led national event where folks take a vow of silence to highlight the silencing and erasure of LGBTQIA+ people at school. The ultimate goal of the exhibit is to inform and energize a lively discussion related to the creation of schools that are safe and accepting for all young people. The purpose of the exhibit is to familiarize young people with the notion of “silence” and the ways it provides a powerful message of support for LGBTQIA+ students who are targets of bullying and harassment. The exhibit also includes a list of extended resources.

Breaking the Sound Barrier: The Women’s Music Movement 1970s-1990s
(9 30″w x 40”h panels)
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, opportunities for women in the music industry were the exception rather than the rule. If being a woman musician meant few opportunities in the music business, being an “out” lesbian meant getting cut out of the equation completely. Women’s music was created as an alternative to the male dominated music industry: musicians, engineers, cover artists, producers and distributors. Although not all women associated with the movement were homosexual or bisexual, lesbians were the driving force behind it, devoted to cultivating a separate creative space that encouraged women’s autonomy and supported the lesbian lifestyle.

Days Without Sunshine: Anita Bryant’s Anti-Gay Crusade
(12 30″w x 40”h panels)
This exhibition explores singer and citrus industry spokesperson Anita Bryant’s Save Our Children campaign that successfully repealed a 1977 Miami-Dade ordinance that outlawed discrimination based on sexual orientation in employment, housing and public accommodation. Bryant’s self-styled crusade marked the beginning of a concerted backlash against America’s increasingly vocal and organized homosexual population that, by the mid 1970s, was beginning to gain political momentum. Bryant’s Save Our Children campaign portrayed homosexuals as deviants and child molesters, setting an example that would be repeated by social and religious conservatives for decades. An unforeseen outcome of the Save Our Children Campaign, the debate garnered unprecedented media attention for the growing gay rights movement and served as a catalyst for the gay and lesbian community to organize nationally and fight back. It remains a pivotal moment in the history of the gay rights movement.

The Big Picture: Gay Movie Posters 1953 to 1978
(6 30″w x 40”h panels)
The poster for Suddenly, Last Summer, the 1959 film adapted from Tennessee Williams’ play, displays Elizabeth Taylor in a sexy swimsuit. Who could know the subject is homosexuality? In order to avoid government censorship, movie producers and distributors developed the Motional Picture Production Code in the 1930s. Depictions of subjects deemed immoral– such as drug addiction and sexual perversion– could no longer have a favorable presence on film. Of course, such taboos, and homosexual characters, while certainly not in the limelight, were seen in the shadows. With the end of the Production Code in 1968, depicting homosexuality in films was no longer forbidden. Now gays became more obvious, and for at least the next decade or two, were usually objectified as a villain or other effeminate male stereotype. The Big Picture, a survey of twenty-five years of gay posters, showcases films in which homosexuality takes center stage.

For more information contact

© 1973 -2024 Stonewall National, Museum, Archives, & Library

© 1973 -2024 Stonewall National Museum & Archives