The Schwules Museum in Berlin, Germany is one of the largest LGBT museums in the world.
On February 24, museum employees discovered evidence of an attack on the institution’s building. Two window panes, the illuminated sign with the museum’s name, and a work of art hanging in front of the entrance door were damaged by gunfire.
‘I think it’s important to state that we don’t know who did this or why’, Ben Miller, historian and board member of the museum, told Dazed Magazine. ‘However, I’m not sure it’s possible to think about this incident without considering the right-wing, anti-queer mobilization that we’re seeing around the world. And I think it’s fair to say that we are certainly the target of that kind of mobilization in general.’ Physical attacks aside, the museum has also experienced Neo-Nazi demonstrations as well as regular threats from phone calls and on social media..
The damaged piece of artwork is a part of Elizabeth Sweeney’s the Unrelenting (2022), created for the ongoing exhibition Queering the Crip, Cripping the Queer, on view through 29 May. The black triangular piece hanging outside the museum references the badges used by the Nazis to label and stigmatize a diverse range of people.
There are no suspects at this time.