Vanguard Magazine

Vanguard Magazine, 1964: Vanguard Revisited Magazine

Works in Exhibition:

Vanguard Magazine, 1964: Vanguard Revisited Magazine, 2011
Courtesy GLBT Historical Society and Joey Plaster
Medium: Xerox and offset printing

Artist’s Description:

Vanguard Revisited Magazine: The youth of Vanguard produced an extraordinary self-titled magazine from 1966-69 that has surprising resonance among GLBT populations living in poverty today, including themes of poverty and social stigma; isolation and loneliness; artistic expression; and faith and queer theology. We will work with the core group described above to create a new publication titled Vanguard Revisited that will pair material from the original Vanguard Magazine “in conversation” with new writings tackling similar themes.

“Vanguard Revisited" connects present-day GLBT anti-poverty organizers with the pivotal history of 1960s GLBT anti-poverty and youth organizing.

In the 1960s, the low-income Tenderloin neighborhood was the epicenter of San Francisco GLBT life and a national destination for runaway and throwaway GLBT youth. A number of pivotal organizations emerged from the ferment of street youth, urban ministers, anti-poverty activists, and homophile organizations.

This project builds programming around the history of one of these organizations: Vanguard, founded by street youth in 1966. Three years before the Stonewall riots, youth protested police harassment on the streets, picketed discriminatory businesses, and held same-sex dances in church halls. They also produced an extraordinary self-titled magazine that has surprising resonance today.

This crucial historical moment presents opportunities to probe the intersections of poverty and social stigma, the role of theology in the GLBT movement, and to draw parallels between strikingly similar work currently being done, forty years later, in San Francisco’s Tenderloin.

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