February 24, 2016 at 1:38 pm EST | by Steve Charing
Chase Brexton, MICA to host trans multimedia project
Terry Stone, gay news, Washington Blade, To Survive on This Shore

(Photo by torbakhopper; courtesy Flickr)

Chase Brexton Health Care’s LGBT Health Resource Center and the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) are sponsoring “To Survive on This Shore” — a presentation of photographs and interviews documenting more than 40 people’s life experiences and issues with gender, identity, age and sexuality.

The lives and challenges of transgender and gender-variant adults over the age of 50 are documented in words and images in a multimedia project opening on March 3 at Chase Brexton Health Care, 1111 N. Charles St. in Baltimore.

A reception and discussion with project co-creator Jess T. Dugan will take place March 3 at 5 p.m. The project will remain open at the Chase Brexton location through June 24.

“We intentionally seek out subjects whose experiences exist within the complex intersections of gender identity, age, race, ethnicity, sexuality, socioeconomic class and geographic location,” said Dugan, the collaborative project’s photographer in a statement. “Though everyone in our project identifies somewhere along the transgender spectrum, there is no single narrative that captures the varied paths that lead to gender discovery or transition.”

In addition to the original exhibit, the project will pay homage to the first-ever National Honor Our LGBT Elders Day by adding Baltimore stories to the show on May 17. That endeavor, which is a result of a partnership between the LGBT Health Resources Center and the University of Maryland Baltimore County, seeks to record the life stories of older LGBT adults.  The entire process is collaborative and requires participants to be involved for a total of four one-hour sessions on Tuesdays or Thursdays from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. during the months of March and April. Transportation can be provided, if needed.

“‘To Survive on this Shore’ shines a light on a group of individuals who so often are left invisible by our society,” said Nate Sweeney, executive director of the LGBT Health Resource Center. “It means so much to us to help share the images and stories of transgender and gender diverse older adults with the community at large, but especially with younger people. For many LGBT identified people, seeing our elders gives us a chance to see our own futures, and that can be crucially important for someone who is struggling with accepting and loving themselves today.”

Besides the exhibit, Dugan will be a guest lecturer at MICA on March 1 from 1-2:30 p.m. in the Main Building, Room M110, at 1300 W. Mt. Royal Ave.

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