June is Pride Month, and at the MFA we’re joining the festivities. Come together for an evening of Spotlight Talks in the exhibitions “The Provincetown Printmakers” and “Jess T. Dugan: Coupled” as well as other activities celebrating LGBTQIA+ communities. While you’re here, catch a screening of The Watermelon Woman, a landmark of queer cinema.
Presented in partnership with Boston Spirit magazine.
Stone Blossom: A Conversation Piece
5:30 and 6:15 pm
In 1939 Paul Cadmus painted a group portrait of three of his friends enjoying a lazy summer afternoon. The artist and his sitters were all gay men belonging to a tight artistic community in New York. Learn more about these remarkable people who lived their lives as they chose, long before the Stonewall riots launched the gay liberation movement.
With Catherine Johnson-Roehr, senior interpretive planner.
The Provincetown Printmakers
6 and 7:15 pm
Explore the leading role women played in the creative explosion of visual arts that occurred in Provincetown in the early 20th century. Key among them are Ethel Mars and Maud Hunt Squire, the latter of whom is the subject of Gertrude Stein’s canonical prose poem “Miss Furr and Miss Skeene,” one of the first works of literature to use the word “gay” as a synonym for homosexual.
With Edward Saywell, chair, Prints and Drawings.
Jess T. Dugan: Coupled
6:30 and 7:30 pm
Explore the ten 20 x 24 Polaroid prints that comprise the exhibition “Jess T. Dugan: Coupled.” Dugan is a queer non-binary artist whose powerful series of portraits of LGBTQ couples was created shortly after the 2004 ruling that legalized same-sex marriage in Massachusetts and reflects that particular moment in time and place.
With Karen Haas, Lane Senior Curator of Photographs.
The Watermelon Woman
Members $12, Nonmembers $15
This landmark of queer cinema is the story of a twenty-something Black lesbian struggling to make a documentary about a beautiful and elusive 1930s Black film actress popularly known as the Watermelon Woman.
Paul Cadmus’s 1940 painting Stone Blossom: A Conversation Piece depicts three lovers and friends lounging at a country home, away from the city. Read about how the painting is cause for one MFA staff member to celebrate a tight community who had an indelible impact on midcentury culture, and view it in Gallery 332 when you visit.