New York Times Review, 1994: "In the tradition of this country's great documentary photographers, Nancy Andrews, a photographer at The Washington Post, illuminates a part of American culture too often hidden from most people's view. Ms. Andrews's sensitive, stirring collection of 70 black-and-white photographs with accompanying oral histories, FAMILY: A Portrait of Gay and Lesbian America (HarperSanFrancisco, paper, $25), is an important record of 20th-century gay life and a joy to read..." more
The early '90s were different time for gays and lesbians
It's hard to believe it's been more than 20 years since "FAMILY: A Portrait of Gay and Lesbian America" was published by HarperCollinsPublishers.
Back in the '90s if you were under 30 you didn't know older gay people, much less someone like Ruth Ellis who was 93 or Gean Harwood and Bruhs Mero who had been a couple for 63 years. Most gay people were INVISIBLE.
But, that was changing, as we were all changing. This book was a very personal journey -- I had only recently realized I was gay and I felt alone. I wanted to find others like me, and share that with the world. In the process I felt a duty to reflect the diversity of our world so that many people would be able to find people like themselves.
The challenge for me was to find people willing to be photographed as gay for a BOOK.
Here are just a few of the images and stories, and you are welcome to read my thoughts about the journey, but do keep mind the year was 1993.