University Galleries of Illinois State University is pleased to present the LGBTQ+ VR Museum from March 21 through March 27, 2024. The exhibition is free and open to the public.
The LGBTQ+ VR Museum is the first virtual reality museum "dedicated to celebrating artifacts, artwork, and stories of LGBTQ+ people." Co-created by Antonia Forster and Thomas Terkildsen, the Museum features personal items and artworks contributed by the LGBTQ+ community to "disrupt historical gatekeeping and erasure of marginalized voices." Each contribution was scanned into a 3D or 2D artwork. Examples include a copy of Giovanni's Room, a novel by James Baldwin; Memorial to a Marriage, artist Particia Cronin's marble monument to marriage equality; and a vibrant pair of high-heeled wedding shoes. Importantly, each item is accompanied by a story told in the voice of the contributor.
The LGBTQ+ VR Museum has received awards from the Tribeca Film Festival (New Voices) and the XRMust Awards (Best Impact/Documentary). It was an official selection for the Open City Documentary Festival, and a finalist for the AIXR VR Awards (VR Social Impact) and Qld XR Festival (Best in VR and Best in Gaming).
This exhibition is co-organized by Kendra Paitz, director and chief curator at University Galleries, and Roy Magnuson, associate professor of Creative Technologies. The exhibition is presented in collaboration with Prairie Pride Coalition and is co-sponsored by AIB Grant – a Multicultural Center Initiative. Thank you to Technology Solutions and RCAB (Research Computing Advisory Board) at Illinois State for supporting this project.