Addison Gallery Feature: Spring Exhibition to Honor Gay Alumnus, Activist and Writer

In memory of Paul Monette ’63, a gay rights activist and writer, the Addison Gallery will feature “Secrets, Loss, Memory, and Courage: Works by Gay Male Artists,” an exhibit set to open on April 27 at Andover, according to the Addison website.

The exhibit will be curated from the Addison’s permanent collections, which have only recently been expanded to include a greater variety of gay male artists with the donation by the class of 1963 at its 50th reunion, according to Brian Allen, Director of the Addison. The donations were made in memory of Monette, who passed away at the age of 49 in 1995 due to complications from AIDS, according to the “New York Times.” Monette wrote “Becoming a Man: Half a Life Story,” a National Book Award-winning memoir detailing his struggle with his sexual orientation at Andover and for much of his life, according to the “New York Times.”

“Most of the art is from the 1970’s, 1980’s and 1990’s. We didn’t have a lot in the collection that was from the AIDS theme or gay identity theme of art. This gift has made a transformative impact on the collection, because we now we really have great things in both of those areas.”

The exhibition will feature work from artists such as Robert Mapplethorpe, George Platt Lynes, John O’Reilly, Paul Cadmus, David Wojnarowicz, Martin Wong, Duane Michals, according to the Addison website. Allen said the Addison will also coordinate with classes and organizations such as Gender Sexuality Alliance (GSA) in order to increase student interest and involvement with the exhibition.