69 Positions: PORTER TÉMOIGNAGE / OUR VANISHING at the MAI, Montreal

  • Event

69 Positions: PORTER TÉMOIGNAGE / OUR VANISHING at the MAI, Montreal

Thu, 08/08/2019 - 18:00 to Sun, 08/11/2019 - 14:45



MAI,3680 rue Jeanne-Mance, Montréal (PQ) H2X 2K5

August 8-24 2019


In 1969, the crime of sodomy was removed from Canada’s Criminal Code, along with laws governing birth control, gun control and gambling. If only two people enjoyed it in private, anal sex, which had previously carried a 14-year prison sentence upon conviction, was no longer a criminal matter.

In the new legal landscape, divisions of appropriate sexual expression hardened around notions of public and private space. The government had opened the bedroom door to assimilation and homonormativity for some of the populace. Nevertheless, our 2LGBTQ communities’ rich collective expressions have demonstrated brilliant resistance to Canada’s hollow narratives of progress and assimilation.

Examining queer life on the 50th anniversary of 1969, this lucid, critical, and playful exhibition features archival works from the collections of VIVO Media Arts, Vidéographe, les Archives gaies du Québec, the ArQuives, and ARTEXTE, alongside works by collectives such as the Front de Libération Homosexuelle and works that flutter out of the archive by contemporary artists Hazel Meyer, David Widgington and Projet Hybris.

Curated by Jamie Ross

Opening: Thursday August 8, 6-9pm

Curator’s tour: Saturday August 10th, 2-3pm

69 Positions is a series of exhibitions and public programming critical of the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalization of gay sex in Canada, initiated by MediaQueer. The first iteration of this project took place at the ArQuives (Toronto), followed by an ongoing exhibition at the SUM Gallery (Vancouver). Funded by the Canada Council for the Arts.

MediaQueer (the Queer Media Database Canada-Quebec) is a bilingual online research and curatorial tool provides free access to researchers, students, artists, academics, curators, cinephiles, critics, and community members to a rich array of art historical and biographical information about Canadian 2LGBTQ moving image works from the 1930s to today. 

Land Acknowledgement

This exhibition takes place on the traditional territory of the Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) Nation. It has historically been a meeting place for other Indigenous nations, including the Omàmiwininì (Algonquin) Nation. As a queer history organization, MediaQueer and its curators feel it is crucial to be informed on the past and ongoing consequences of colonialism when dealing with all 2LGBTQ liberation in these territories.


Entrance: double doors with automatic button. The gallery and the café are on the first floor.

Gender-neutral washrooms with an accessible stall in each (non-automated).

You are welcome to bring your own assistive devices (canes, wheelchairs, walkers, etc.) to the theatre. Our front of house team will help with the storage and retrieval of your equipment. Please speak to any member of the front of house staff for more information when you are on-site.