Pictured from the left; Elise Chenier, Kirstie Goodfellow, Ellen Woodsworth (exhibit participant), and Esther Shannon (exhibit participant).

Online exhibit seeks to uncover the overlooked history of Vancouver’s women’s movement


Kirstie Goodfellow and Holly French were the grand prize winners of Simon Fraser University’s Student-Community Engagement Award in 2019. The focus of their project, which was overseen by SFU history professor Elise Chenier, was to shine a spotlight the often overlooked history of the LGBTQ and women’s movements in Vancouver. Their exhibition, titled "An Army of Lovers" takes it’s name from Rita Mae Brown’s 1974 poem "Sappho’s Reply”, and recounts the oral histories of lesbian, bisexual, two-spirit and queer women living in the city in the 1970s and 80s.
The public exhibit was set to open in March but was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the exhibition has been converted to a virtual format, and all of the all of the interview clips, banners and materials are free for visitors to enjoy at the Army of Lovers online archive. When the time comes to open the country back up, Goodfellow says the team hopes to take their exhibition to the ArQuives, a public archive of information and materials in any medium, by and about LGBTQ2+ people, primarily produced in or concerning Canada.

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