Vagina Museum to host inclusive takeover that ‘uplifts trans voices’

Trans heart

A Reading-based queer and trans artist collective is set to take over London’s Vagina Museum, to highlight how “trans people should be included in spaces that talk about bodies and health, rather than pushed out by TERFs.” 

On Friday (19 January), Double Okay will bring experimental performance, art and sound to the world’s first bricks-and-mortar museum dedicated to “vaginas, vulvas and the gynaecological anatomy”.

Double Okay is a grassroots queer and trans artist collective that works to create a connected community of LGBTQ+ people in Berkshire. 

Zoe Williams, head of communications and fundraising at the museum in Bethnal Green, tells PinkNews: “We’ve never hosted anything quite like this before, with a rich mix of media including visuals, performance and sound.” 

The Vagina Museum's new space at Poyser Street in Bethnal Green.
The Vagina Museum is committed to trans inclusion. (Christa Holka, 2023)

Ollie Musson, the co-founder of Double Okay, says they are excited about the mix of video work with performance, which will also include elements of drag and cabaret.

“Over-all, the most exciting thing is being able to share this opportunity with other performers and artists from Reading and Berkshire,” they add. 

You may like to watch

Double Okay has been a point of “local resistance and solidarity in response to a lack of queer spaces”, for the past five years.

“Our ultimate goal is to create a community of queer and trans creatives who are working in Reading and beyond, who are connected and invested in our community,” Musson adds.

“As trans people, we feel it’s important that institutions and museums are working to not only be trans-inclusive, but to centre and uplift trans voices. 

“Trans people should be included in spaces that talk about bodies and health, rather than pushed out by TERFs.” 

Including trans creatives is “essential” to Double Okay’s work, Musson says. “The climate in the UK for trans people is violent, and that’s not something we can forget – we live it every day. 

“But I guess it’s trying to focus on what things can become, and how we can make things more bearable, or how we can create moments of joy and support right now.” 

The Vagina Museum ‘proudly committed to trans inclusion’

According to Williams, one of the museum’s key missions since opening in 2017 “has been to act as a forum for feminism, women’s rights, the LGBT+ community and the intersex community.”

The museum is “proudly committed to trans inclusion” and its work to break “taboos and challenging heteronormativity, cis-normativity and patriarchy” is “bound to ruffle some feathers sometimes”, she adds. 

“We stand for education, joy and empowerment, and that’s more important to us than avoiding a few mean tweets. Trans people have always existed and will always exist, and we’re proud to hand over our space to Double Okay to showcase some of the work of the collective.” 

The museum is located at 276 Poyser St, London E2 9RF, and tickets can be purchased here.

Please login or register to comment on this story.