Making sense of Making Out 67-17

Making Out 67-17 explores fifty years of LGBTQ+ design and, to quote its blurb:

“brings together disciplines, images and objects to highlight the diversity and talent of the LGBTQ+ communities – and to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the repeal of the UK’s Sexual Offences Act.”

I don’t pretend to know what life was like for non-cishet people in the UK before the repeal, but trying to imagine being on the receiving-end of institutionalised homo- and trans-phobia… well, not good. Anyhow, I visited just after it had opened, and was impressed – some wonderful pieces, and quite a few familiar names such as Alexander McQueen, Holly Johnson, Keith Haring, and Derek Jarman. There could be so many more, and it is clear how much LGBTQ+ designers enriched our visual culture for the benefit of all in a society that hasn’t always accepted their existence. The exhibition is on at Solent Showcase until 6th Jan 2018, and it’s well worth a look. Here are a few highlights:


Robert Indiana’s ‘Love Stamp’ – a wonderfully tiny, iconic piece of design which must have spread the word far and wide…


What Came First? by Kyle Bean – a simple enough concept, but beautifully executed and quite possibly my fave of the exhibition.


Skull Clutch Bag by Alexander McQueen – glam knuckle-duster bling destined for a future museum; it looks like it was born to be displayed in a glass case.


Got to like a bit of Keith Haring, even if you don’t want to inflate a baby.