Mary's Naturally, 1976
Created for "New Monuments for New Cities" the inaugural project of the High Line Network Joint Art Initiative, a new collaboration between infrastructure reuse projects in North America. For the exhibition, five urban reuse projects that are part of the High Line Network invited five of their local artists or artist groups to create proposals (in the form of posters) for new monuments. The exhibition opened in New York after traveling to Houston, Austin, Chicago, and Toronto throughout 2019.
Our poster: Mary’s Naturally, 1976 is a tribute to Houston’s iconic gay bar, Mary’s Naturally—a hub for the city’s queer community for 40 years. Though impermanent, this proposed monument acts in place of the absent plaques, busts, or obelisks that should commemorate the Houstonians killed by AIDS. It is a memorial anchored in remembering one night’s entertainment in the backyard of a bar, making space for long-passed people the artists can never speak with, in a city they did not grow up in, at a time before AIDS that they fundamentally cannot comprehend.