2024 has begun with great excitement as we embark on a journey filled with a remarkable lineup of events for the year ahead.

claiming our past, celebrating our present – creating our future

This February, we warmly invite you to join us in celebrating LGBT History Month with the inspiring Out On An Island: claiming our past, celebrating our present – creating our future at the welcoming Monkton Arts. Get ready to experience a thought-provoking exhibition, including a brand new art installation inspired by the project Oral History Interviews. The exhibition is accompanied by parallel workshops and engaging activities, all expertly delivered by our talented team and guest artists, Jenna Sabine and Dawn Fidler.  Read on to discover more about our celebrations.

photo by Hector Manchego.

A history that has often been erased

LGBT History Month serves as a vital reminder and recognition of a history that has often been denied, ignored, and erased. It gives us an opportunity to reflect upon the Isle of Wight’s own LGBTQ+ history, which has faced various challenges and obstacles due to changes in the law, feelings of shame, and embarrassment of both individuals and society in general.

Out On An Island at IWPride 2023: the team showed the history of Pride through the placards from the 70s to date. photo by Hector Manchego

What to expect

Let us take you on a journey spanning over one hundred years of LGBTQ+ history & heritage. Explore the stories of ordinary individuals as well as renowned figures who have left an indelible mark on the LGBTQ+ community, both locally and nationally. Immerse yourself in a captivating historical timeline featuring significant LGBTQ+ events, and explore the curated heritage trail map that showcases the invaluable contributions of this vibrant community.  The exhibition also features artwork by Karl Stedman and Sydney Cardew.

Bed by Sydney Cardew

Leave your creative imprint on the Isle of Wight Quilt

There will be workshops for people of all ages and the opportunity to design a patch for an Isle of Wight Memorial Quilt, inspired by the AIDS Memorial Quilt. 

Cant attend a workshop? Pick up a patch of calico material from Monkton Arts for you to sew on or you can draw or paint onto an A4 sized piece of paper. The designs will then be transferred onto calico and sewn together. Workshop dates below.

You can also do own drawing at home and email a high res photo to us and we will transfer it to a calico and add it to the quilt.  Watch the video here

Mark your calendars

Thursday February 1, 5pm – 8pm – Join us for an unforgettable launch event, meet the team from Out On An Island and learn about the exhibition.

Saturday February 3, 10.30am – 12.30pm  – Discover Rainbow Island Family Support’s monthly cafes and explore the LGBTQ+ support available from other fantastic Isle of Wight organizations. Learn about the rich history of the Memorial Quilt and unleash your creativity by designing your own personalized patch.

Wednesday February 7, 5.30pm – 8.40pm  –  Another opportunity to celebrate the history of our NHS and their contribution/support of the LGBTQ+ community; learn about the rich history of the Memorial Quilt and unleash your creativity by designing your own personalized patch.

Thursday February 29, 5pm – 7pm – Memorial Quilt reveal and closing of exhibition.

If you are a school and want to visit, we are happy to organise a guided tour with workshops. Please contact caroline@stonecrabs.co.uk 

quilt workshops, Lgbt+ history club

Pride In Self, Pride In Place

Out On An Island had a successful 2023, the project’s book gained recognition and was awarded both ‘Isle of Wight Book Of The Year’ and ‘Best Non Fiction’ at the Isle of Wight Book Awards. The project also secured new funding from the National Lottery’s Heritage Fund for its Pride In Self, Pride In Place project.

The project’s ethos is, when you can stand confidently in your own story, you can truly have pride in the place you live. Working with volunteers, fifteen LGBTQ+ life stories, oral histories connected to the Isle of Wight will be recorded. The project will also research and explore the pioneering work of the NHS in LGBT culture during the 1980’s and 1990’s. 

More news coming soon!

We’re just getting started! There’s plenty more in store, so keep an eye out for our next newsletter.

StoneCrabs Team