The Work of Love, the Queer of Labor

The exhibition explores both historical and imagined connections between queer and left activism. By reviewing queer identities from the class perspective and class identities—through queer sensibilities, the artists in the show rediscover progressive potential within today’s LGBTQI cultural paradigm. The exhibition makes a connection between contemporary LGBTQI+ movement with the 20th c. gay and lesbians struggles for recognition and autonomy. The latter was imbued with Marxist analysis and belief that by liberating both love and labor people can build a self-regulating worker’s society, as opposed to one that exploits and commodifies sexual bodies. Hailing from diverse geographic locations and backgrounds, the artists in the show reflect upon past utopias—from Russian revolutionary “queer” avant-garde projects, international working-class movement, to classless “affectionate communities” built on gay and lesbian solidarity—envisioning new forms of social organisation and sustainable life in the era of automated digital capitalism and social polarisation. Curated by Olga Kopenkina.

At The Work of Love, the Queer of Labor the first published copies of Werker 2 — A Gestural History of the Young Worker can be read in a privacy booth that was designed for this instance. Werker 2 — A Gestural History of the Young Worker is published by Spector Books and will be available soon in book shops and online.

Opening reception: June 23, 6-8 pm. 
On view: June 24 – August 20, 2022.

Pratt Manhattan Gallery
144 West 14th Street, New York.
Pratt Manhattan Gallery