‘The Future is Now’ gives young LGBTQ artists a platform

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1078 Gallery partnered with Pedal Press, a Chico-based printing press company, to host an art show focused on giving LGBTQ youths the opportunity to showcase their talent on Sunday.

The art exhibit was created by the Stonewall Youth Group, an organization geared towards giving LGBTQ youth a safe space to express themselves and explore their identities.

The art embraced a variety of styles and mediums including painted wood and recycled canvas paintings of various sizes. Each piece conveyed an array of messages urging society to support marginalized communities.

The gallery also exhibited performances of the young artists.

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The first artist, Milo Kylar, performed “Little Talks” by Of Monsters and Men as his family and peers cheered him on.

Later in the night, Kylar explained the importance of the Stonewall Youth Group and how it changed his life, giving him the opportunity to grow and heal.

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Milo Kylar standing in front of his collage artwork that 1078 Gallery showcased Photo credit: Melissa Joseph

“It’s helped me and my family understand me and understand what I’m going through,” Kylar said. “If it wasn’t for Stonewall, I wouldn’t have been able to legally change my name or start T (testosterone), so I’m really grateful for them.”

Many young LGBTQ teens, like Milo, felt that without resources like Pedal Press and the Stonewall Youth Group, they would have never found a space to comfortably show their art and, more importantly, be themselves.

Cathryn Carkhuff, one half of Pedal Press, explained that while their printing press had traveled to festivals and other art gatherings, their true vision was programming with youth groups. Partnering with the Stonewall Youth Group and 1078 Gallery gave Pedal Press the perfect opportunity to test their ability to create a positive impact in the lives of youths and establish themselves as cornerstones in the Chico community.

“The benefit of this event was that the trans community already secured in the Stonewall Youth Group was so strong that we just gave them art supplies and let it grow on its own… it’s rewarding to watch,” Carkhuff said.

The Pedal Press and Stonewall Youth Group continue to help the community of Chico with events like LGBTQ art shows, using their resources and informative classes to give marginalized communities a voice in a world where they don’t have one.

Melissa Joseph can be reached at [email protected] or @melisstweetz on Twitter.