Coming Out in America

No matter how much one would like to turn a romantic eye on one’s teenaged years, the bottom line — or rather, the hard truth of the case — is that being a teenager was a hard time. Sure, there were great moments unadulterated by responsibility or cognizance of maturity, but in the end, it was a time ridden with acne and the transitional disorientation of fluctuating body and mind. And that’s just for your “average” teenager. Even though it’s 2014, homosexuality is still met with suspicion and hatred, and for teenagers who have struggled with their sexual identity, this compounds the teen years into something far more complicated. Photographer Michael Sharkey has traveled over the past eight years documenting queer youth across America and Europe, and this has culminated in the exhibit “Queer Kids: Coming Out in America,” which is on display until January 4 at the Stonewall National Museum & Archives Wilton Manors Gallery (2157 Wilton Drive, Wilton Manors). These portraits are “intimate testaments to his subjects’ powerful self-awareness; at once empathetic and opulent, they are the visual counterpart to the voice these young people have struggled — and lately succeeded — to find.” Call 954-763-8565, or visit stonewall-museum.org.
Thu., Nov. 13, 2014
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Abel Folgar