Migrating Archives creates connections between organizations around the world that preserve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender historical materials. It is also a glimpse into what these organizations do and collect: I invited each participant to send images and descriptions from one or two archives in their collections. Most represent individuals who have died, ranging from the famous to the totally unknown.
These individual archives have migrated from their geographical origins to become guests at The GLBT History Museum. As delegates chosen to visit San Francisco, the materials form a collective portrait of twelve international organizations and some of the histories they preserve. The video component of the display introduces some of the people who made it possible for these archives to migrate for this exhibition.
My idea is to put materials precious to each collection into motion as they become our guest archives, sometimes crossing national borders more easily than we can. For people whose traces are so often erased even by our biological families, omitted from official histories, or just lost, archives are a way of creating our own lineage. Migrating Archives is another step in this vital and very queer process of historical self-creation.