This website is one part of a larger whole; it is not finished, it is not (and never will be) complete, it is merely the beginning.
A few months ago we started a project that has grown exponentially since its conception. Our aim is to actively engage with an issue that has historically been omitted, open it up to the community, and welcome the changes that need to be made.
The project began with a Duvet; David’s Duvet of Love. A fantastically arresting piece that demands attention, time and empathy. It is a large, plain black duvet, designed and decorated with thousands of badges. The badges range from political to comic, explicit to childish; covering the 1970’s through to present day. The badges are placed expertly to form the outline of two male figures embracing, with the words ‘Duvet of Love,’ in the bottom corner. Make what you will of this duvet, please, it is not our place to prescribe any interaction or engagement you have with it; all we ask is that you do engage.
I (Freya), was fortunate enough to ask the right question at the right time- ‘Is there any way that I can do some oral histories?’ It had been an interest of mine, and a previous project that had the propensity for interviews had fallen through. A curator at the Museum of Norwich (the museum that accessioned David’s Duvet), told me both about the Duvet, and David. I was, to say the least, excited.
After meeting him for the first time, I raced back to the museum to express my excitement (I practically ran around the office in circles); it was here that another ally, and another David, joined the project. David (H-C) was part of the most recent cohort of trainees within the Teaching Museum, he was excited by the interviews also and asked whether there would be space for him to get involved (- of course there was).
From here, we began planning (really it was more of a throw every idea in a hat and see what fits), and came up with the very shadowy figure of an outline. It is from here that the project has evolved; in simple terms the projects breaks down thus:
- The display of David’s Duvet (to coincide with 50 years since partial decriminalisation), with interpretation and specially made badges that have an image of David’s Duvet on.
- A small exhibit of 1960’s items to contextualise this Act
- Oral History interviews with David, that will be accessioned by the museum to be used in future displays (- the aim is that once we have collected more voices, they will also be accessioned by the museum)
- A trail throughout the city of Norwich, highlighting spaces that have LGBTQ links/histories, in order to emphasise the space that LGBTQ take up in our communities. The trail will be partnered with a podcast that allows visitors to hear these oral histories, anecdotes and memories; of people from within the LGBTQ community and allies to the community. (The podcast will be available from this website, and their will be badges to collect for people that complete the trail).
- Finally, the continuation of this project; this is simply the beginning. We want this to begin a tradition of celebration and commemoration, and we aim to continue the collection of voices on this subject. If you would like to get involved, click the ‘Get Involved’ button on the homepage.