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Local Artists

It can be deeply powerful to discover art and artists all around us that reflect our own identities and struggles. Below is a list of local artists to explore and connect with in and around Chicago. Musicians, sculptors, painters, and more are working to curate the thriving aesthetic atmosphere of the Trans community in this beautiful city.  Links to their social media and websites allow you to financially support these individuals' work.

Local Artists
  • Transgender
    (adj.) This term describes someone who does not identify with the sex that they were assigned at birth.
  • Cisgender
    (adj.) This term describes someone who identifies with the sex that they were assigned at birth. This is a sister term to the word "transgender" that is used so as to avoid othering gender miniorities. Note: We would like recognize that while cisgender identities (male or female) are considered to be the most common, neither should be refered to as "normal". We don't advocate for the word normal as it perpetuates the false narrative that gender minorities are abnormal.
  • Genderfluid
    (adj.) This term describes a person whose gender is fluid. Genderfluid individuals do not identify with a fixed gender identity, rather their gender identities may change over time. Those who are genderfluid, may experience changes in their gender on a daily, monthly, yearly, etc. basis.
  • Agender
    (adj.) This term describes someone who does not identify with a particular gender, feels that they have no gender, or has no connection with the concept of gender.
  • Intersex
    (adj.) This term describes someone who was born outside of the medical binary (anatomy, reproductive organs, or chromosomal differences). If this is discovered at birth or a young age, people who are intersex often face harmful corrective surgery and are often not informed of the condition. A note: The physical traits of intersex individuals are usually discovered at birth or young ages. Doctors and parents often pursue surgeries to alter these naturally occuring varriations to more closely resemble male or female anatomy. It should be noted that these surgeries: a.) do not attain informed consent from the person who is undergoing the surgery b.) are unecessary in most cases c.) can be physically, emotionally, and/or psychologically harmful for the individual in both short-term and long-term ways People who are intersex are often not told about their identity or the operation(s). Some people who are intersex may use this term to describe their assigned gender at birth and may also use it in reference to their sense of their own gender identity. Note: As an AFAB (assigned female at birth) individual, I would like to recognize that I do not have a complete understanding of what it means to be intersex. As with all of our terms, we welcome and encourage those within this community to help us expand this definition.
  • Demigender
    (adj.) This term refers to someone who identifies with a partial, but not full, connection to a particular gender or any gender.
  • Demiboy
    (adj.) This term refers to someone who partially, but not wholly, identifies as a man or as being masculine, regardless of the sex they were assigned at birth.
  • Demigirl
    (adj.) This term refers to someone who partially, but not wholly, identifies as a woman or as feminine, regardless of the sex that they were assigned at birth.
  • Bigender
    (adj.) This term translates as "two genders" and refers to someone who experiences two gender identities. These gender identities can be male, female, or any nonbinary identity. One of these gender identities may or may not correspond with the sex that an individual was assigned at birth. See Multigender below for more information and a note from the authors.
  • Multigender
    (adj.) This term describes someone who experiences more than two gender identities. Like bigender individuals, these identities can be any combination of male, female, or any other nonbinary identities. Note: Multigender and bigender are very closely related terms and the distinction between them is based on the number of genders that a person experiences. As with any sexual or gender identity, use the label or term that feels most applicable and the most like "home" to you.
  • Genderqueer
    (adj.) This term describes someone who does not have a normative experience with their gender and can be used to describe any gender identity.
  • Non-binary
    (adj.) This term describes someone whose gender identity does not fall within the binary (male and female) experience. You may see this term shortened to "nb" or "enby".
  • Two-Spirit
    (adj.) A note from the authors before defining this term: This identity is specific to the Indigenous communities of North and Central America and the language we have as colonizers cannot do justice to the significance of this identity. This modern term refers to a general concept of identity that was common to many Indigenous communities. While this general concept was common across Native American cultures, Two-Spirit individuals are understood uniquely within each comunity. The term "Two-Spirit" can describe a gender identity and/or a sexual orientation. The belief that this term originates from is that Two-Spirit individuals hold within them a spirit of both feminity and masculinity. It is a culturally imbedded identity and as such it is crucial to provide the historical and cultural significance that the term "Two-Spirit" carries. Two-Spirit people are Native American individuals who combine traditionally male and female roles within their nation. In most nations, they held a distinct gender status and important positions within the nation such as healers or teachers. As a result of colonization, genocide, and forced assimilation, they have fallen from this place of reverance and often face violence for their identity. They are refered to as being of a third or, in some cases, fourth gender. Note: While we have done our best to provide a basic understanding of the term "Two-Spirit", we strongly encourage our readers to seek out the resources and publications by Indigenous communities. We also welcome feedback and critique of any and all of our terms, but especially this one considering its cultural significance. Here is a resource that further explains the term "Two-Spirit" and its origins: https://www.them.us/video/watch/geo-neptune-explains-two-spirit
  • Hijra
    (adj.) (n. proper) A note from the authors before defining this term: As white and white passing individuals, we cannot provide a full and comprehensive explanation of the term "Hijra". We have done our best to consult historical resources that are informed and created by the community from which this term originates. The term "Hijra" describes the third gender identity of specific individuals in India (and more rarely in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Nepal). This identity has deep sociocultural roots and religious/spiritual significance within the Hindu religion. Here is a resource that we encourage our readers to visit to learn more about this identity: https://www.sapiens.org/biology/hijra-india-third-gender/
  • Gender Identity
    How a person thinks about their gender within themselves
  • Gender Expression
    How a person chooses to present themselves to others
  • Sex Assigned at Birth
    this is the determination made at birth by a medical professional based on visible sex charactersitics (i.e. genetalia) about a person's biological sex. A lot of folks tend to use sex and gender interchangeably but they refer to two very different concepts! Most people are either AFAB (assigned female at birth) or AMAB (assigned male at birth).
  • Gender Binary
    the binary is the understanding that gender is only male and female
  • Transitioning
    the process in changing things in one's life and body to align with one's gender identity
  • Medical Transitions
    the process of seeking out medically affirming surgery or treatment (hormone replacement or puberty blockers) to change sex characteristics to affirm one's gender identity
  • Social Transition
    going through the process of coming out and changing how one is viewed by others (changing name or pronouns)
  • Legal Transition
    the process of legally changing one's name or gender marker on legal documentation - this process often requires documentation of medical transition
  • Biological Sex
    a medical term used to refer to the chromosomal, hormonal and anatomical characteristics that are used to classify an individual as female or male or intersex. Often referred to as simply “sex,” “physical sex,” “anatomical sex,” or specifically as “sex/gender assigned at birth.” Often seen as a binary but as there are many combinations of chromosomes, hormones, and primary/secondary sex characteristics, it’s more accurate to view this as a spectrum (which is more inclusive of intersex people as well as trans-identified people). – Is commonly conflated with gender.
  • Cisnormativity
    the assumption, in individuals or in institutions, that everyone is cisgender, and that cisgender identities are superior to trans identities or people. Leads to invisibility of non-cisgender identities
  • Center on Halsted Youth Housing Program
    Description Center on Halsted’s Youth Housing Program has joined forces with Rebuild Foundation to bring LGBTQA youth experiencing homelessness or housing instability, out of homelessness and into the power of being connected to a supportive community. Address 3656 N. Halsted St., Chicago, IL 60613 Website https://www.centeronhalsted.org/youthhousing.html Contact 773-472-6469 ext. 431

DISCLAIMER: The List does not represent or endorse any of the services or service providers listed herein. This list is provided for information only as to available resources and is not intended to reflect affiliation with or support of these service providers. The details of resources are subject to change and could be out of date on this website. See the resources contact or website for current details. 

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