The Queer Voices 2017 art exhibit and open-mic night opened Friday, June 2, at the Open Community Arts Center. Queer Voices was born from the Pulse nightclub shooting June 12, 2016. “Queer individuals are routinely trivialized, silenced, and killed,” according to the exhibit’s curatorial a statement. “For many, the Pulse shooting acted as a mobilizing force. People across the country banded together to collect funds for the victims’ families, hold candlelight vigils, and raise awareness. Queer Voices is one such event. This exhibition aims to provide a platform for queer artists, as many galleries and museums deem LGBTQ work to be niche or unprofitable.”  

The art is “organized under the umbrella of ‘queer,’” but the work “is far from monolithic,” the statement said. “The artists engage with a nexus of issues surrounding queerness, each reflecting the individual’s distinct perspective.” The exhibit is curated by Kevin Warth, S.N. Parks and John Faughender.