Challenged by its mission to advocate for LGBTQ equality in the Deep South through the arts and humanities, Living in Limbo, Inc. announces the next step in its continued evolution: State and Union: Lesbian Families in the Deep South, A Living in Limbo Documentary (State and Union).
State and Union is a feature length documentary currently in production, co-directed by Carolyn Sherer and Lara Embry, and produced by Michele Forman. It was inspired by the highly-acclaimed exhibition, Living in Limbo: Lesbian Families in the Deep South, photographs by Carolyn Sherer, and provides intimate stories of the community represented by the exhibition’s portraits.
“The Living in Limbo exhibition attracted record-breaking crowds during its debut at the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute (BCRI), prompting them to host its national travel as part of their mission to promote civil and human rights. Across the country the images prompted significant interest from viewers wanting to know the stories of the families in the portraits,” said Carolyn Sherer, exhibition creator and photographer. “This interest, coupled with the current state of LGBTQ rights in the U.S., compelled us to share the community’s voice through a documentary.”
State and Union follows the lives of several lesbian families in Birmingham, Alabama and illustrates real-life stories of pain and perseverance, strength and humor – sharing a mosaic of a powerful, diverse community living with both frustration and hope in a state that offers no legal protections for LGBTQ people.
“With the recent Supreme Court rulings on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and California’s Proposition 8, coupled with the 50th Anniversary of the Birmingham Civil Rights Movement, we have a sense of urgency to capture this contemporary struggle for human rights and equality for all,” said Ann Huckstep, chair of Living in Limbo, Inc. “It is our priority to share these voices on a national stage so we can bring awareness to the substantial injustices that still exist for this community.”
The documentary is currently in production and is being produced in association with Freedom to Marry and the Family Equality Council.
“State and Union shows and tells the stories of lesbian families in the South – their love, their humor, their struggle and their strength – and will help spark the conversations that grow support and lead to change,” said Evan Wolfson, president of Freedom to Marry. “It’s stories like these that explain why Southerners, like other Americans, are coming to understand better the lives and commitment of gay families in the community and why they value the freedom to marry – and are joining the nationwide majority for marriage.”
State and Union highlights the evolving landscape of family, demonstrating that love and commitment are the same for all, regardless of age, race, socioeconomic background, or sexual orientation. It also challenges society to embrace equality, inclusion and understanding for the LGBTQ community, and to work toward eradicating discrimination.
“LGBTQ families in the South have the same dreams and aspirations for their children as the rest of the country,” said Family Equality Council Executive Director Gabriel Blau. “Family Equality Council continues to raise our voices toward fairness for all families, and we are proud to stand alongside Living in Limbo for this instrumental documentary that delivers the opportunity for these Southern voices to be heard.”
State and Union has been endorsed by the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Birmingham Museum of Art. To learn more about supporting Living in Limbo, Inc. and State and Union, visit www.livinginlimbo.org.