About this Archive
Rebel Dykes are self-described as a group committed to preserving, exploring and sharing the archive of a bunch of kick-ass post-punk dykes who shook up London, UK in the 1980s. The Rebel Dykes Archive (RDA) is centred around the heritage of a group of young lesbians and punk women who lived on the edge of society in 1980s London, specifically Brixton, Vauxhall, Peckham, Soho, Forest Gate and Hackney. These women were involved in political movements during1983-1991, including Greenham Common, South London Women’s Hospital Occupation, anti-censorship, sex-positive feminism, sex workers’ rights, anti-Section 28, the Poll Tax Riots, OutRage! and other HIV/AIDS activism. As a movement, the Rebel Dykes were heavily involved in art and culture, by creating music, art, club nights, zines and festivals.
RDA also holds materials relating to the eponymous documentary, ‘Rebel Dykes’, which tells the ‘unheard story of a community of dykes who met doing art, music, politics and sex, and how they went on to change their world.’
The aims of RDA are to:
• Stimulate intergenerational debate and community
• Inspire lesbian and bisexual women
• Work with academics to ensure the Rebel Dykes are included in history
• Work with artists, musicians, filmmakers and performers to create artworks
• Reignite and reinvent the Rebel Dykes community in order to fight isolation amongst younger and older dykes and allies
Scope and Content
Archival materials deposited by Rebel Dykes and relating to their eponymous documentary (1985-2021); Archival video footage used in the documentary Rebel Dykes, including footage shot inside Chain Reaction, of the Black Widows, at demonstrations, Gay Pride, and of everyday life in London in the late 1980s/early 1990s. (1983-1990); Digital images of Rebel Dykes, depicting club nights at Chain Reaction, demonstrations at Greenham Common, anti-Section 28 demonstrations and Pride (c1983-1994); Oral histories given by Rebel Dykes , detailing how they became politicised, their experiences of the SM community including at Chain Reaction, and what being a ‘rebel dyke’ means to them (2015); Digital files used by the filmmakers during the development of the documentary 'Rebel Dykes', including research images, music and production stills (2017-c2020); Digital files used by filmmakers in the distribution of the documentary 'Rebel Dykes' including promotional materials (2020-2021); Framed works and photographs from the Rebel Dykes Art & Archive Show (2021). (1983-2021).
3 boxes, 36 oversized artworks, 1307 jpg, 124 tif, 51 pdf, 19 avi, 3 png, 1 gif, 2 pdf, 5 mov, 20 wav, 1 m4a, 6 mp4, 19 mp3, 7 aif