Art of homosexual or lesbian imagery that is based around the issues that evolved out of the gender and identity politics of the 1980s
Although there have been many representations of homosexuality and lesbianism in the history of art, it was in the 1980s, in the wake of the feminist movement and the AIDS crisis that the queer aesthetic was born. Artists began to document a cultural landscape that was rapidly disappearing, as well as the backlash that had taken place against sexual freedom.
Much of the art resonates with themes of life and death, in particular the photographs of Nan Goldin and Wolfgang Tillmans and the installations of Felix Gonzalez-Torres. There is also a critical exploration of representation, as in the photographs of lesbians by Catherine Opie and in the studies of the gay S&M scene in New York by Robert Mapplethorpe.