Beau McCall, REWIND: MEMORIES ON REPEAT, is a timely and heartfelt art book celebrating the Black LGBTQ+ community. McCall’s debut art book honors the legacy of ten of McCall’s deceased friends through collages composed of archival photos and images from his button artwork. The collages capture the late 1970s to the mid-1980s, from Philadelphia to New York, during the LGBTQ+ rights movement, the height of disco music and the AIDS crisis.
“Since the 1970s we have lost so many individuals to AIDS, drugs, and anti-trans violence. So I wanted to tell some of these lost stories through images of my own friends who experienced these issues,” said McCall. “It is my way of honoring my friendship with them and bringing greater visibility and representation to the unsung everyday people of the Black LGBTQ+ community.”
McCall’s work as an artist is rooted in framing personal memories and experiences with historical and social contexts. As an extension, McCall’s new body of work is the story of the power of memories to keep bonds alive, the beauty of friendship to help us thrive, the power of love to help us heal and the indomitable spirit of the LGBTQ+ community.
- Souleo, Guest Editor
Beau McCall - enthusiastically proclaimed by American Craft magazine as “The Button Man”—uses mother of pearl, wool, and decorative buttons to touch on various topics including race, economics, social justice, and pop culture. His wearable and visual artwork has been included in exhibitions at Nordstrom, the African American Museum in Philadelphia, Houston Museum of African American Culture, Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, Stax Museum of American Soul Music, The Black Fashion Museum in Harlem, the Langston Hughes House in partnership with the inaugural Columbia University Wallach Art Gallery Uptown triennial and StoryCorps, and Rush Arts Gallery. Private individuals and public institutions such as the The Museum at FIT, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Cyndi Lauper’s True Colors Residence, and Debbie Harry of Blondie have collected McCall’s work. McCall is also a noted creative arts expert featured in the NY Times, Associated Press, L.A. Times, Daily Mail UK, and more. In addition, he has served as a teaching artist at the Newark Museum, the New York Public Library, and the Harlem Arts Alliance. McCall was born in Philadelphia, PA and currently lives and works in Harlem, NY.
Souleo - is an independent curator for events, exhibitions, and cultural programs. He has collaborated with noteworthy institutions and brands, including the New York Public Library, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Columbia University, Barnard College, Museum of Arts & Design, and Nordstrom. Souleo's work has been widely covered in outlets including the Associated Press, NY Times, and The New Yorker.
A portion of the proceeds from the book sales will benefit SAGE Center Harlem, which serves LGBTQ+ older adults with a diverse array of social events and support groups, daily hot nutritional lunches, a cyber center, health and wellness programs, arts and cultural events, and more.