LGBTQ History

PHOTOS: These vintage queer photos were risqué for their time

A gay couple embracing in bedPhoto: Sébastien Lifshitz

French film auteur Sébastien Lifshitz has combed through vintage photos at garage sales and flea markets and eBay for more than 20 years, amassing a collection of old queer life. We have no idea who the people in his pictures are, but we have at least a little glimpse into a world that was, somehow, preserved.

Gazing through these photos introduces a new mystery: who took them, and why did such potentially risky images survive after leaving the photographer’s hands?

The photos were part of his book The Invisibles: Vintage Portraits of Love and PrideIt came out in 2014, but these photos share a timeless quality that’s worth revisiting any day.

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