Chosen Family Portraits at MOV

One of the Vancouver family portraits on display at MOV's "Chosen Family Portraits" exhibit. Photo: MOV

“There are the families we are born with and there are the families that we choose.”

That’s the theme of a engaging new exhibit at the Museum of Vancouver (MOV): Chosen Family Portraits. Created in conjunction with the Vancouver Queer Film Festival, Chosen Family Portraits is a community-based art project that lovingly captures “chosen” (i.e., not necessarily biologically or legally linked) families among Vancouver’s queer, gay, lesbian, and transgender population.

Photographed in August 2010 by photographer Sarah Race and radio journalist Sarah Buchanan at Yaletown’s Roundhouse Community Centre, these family portraits demonstrate the “power of the families we choose, rather than the families we’re born with.” They’re also a look at real Vancouverites who are seldom in the spotlight: ordinary yet loving families, couples, best friends. It’s a joy to see our neighbours this way.

Though the portraits can be seen on bus stops around town (as a public art installation that heightens queer visibility), MOV is the only location to exhibit all 28 portraits, alongside a video documentary about each family.

Catch Chosen Family Portraits at MOV now through September 30, 2011.

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