Pepsi Refresh

States of Union 8

States of Union

Lesbian/Gay youth who have been abandoned by their family are nine times more likely to attempt suicide because of feelings of isolation. A Pepsi Grant would fund the educational youth component of States of Union. States of Union is a multi-dimensional project that focuses on gay & lesbian couples/families. In depicting healthy and stable family life within the gay community, State of Union will help combat the high rate of suicides among gay youth. Through traveling exhibitions, educational workshops and an interactive community blog, the youth component of States of Union will encourage positive identity formation.  Your grant will fund the technical development of a website where gay youth can find information about national/community resources, pose questions, and share stories about their coming-out experiences.  It will also fund the execution of the traveling educational & exhibition program.


Alix Smith talks about States of Union on IN THE LIFE

This month on IN THE LIFE we talk to hate crime victims and perpetrators about The Nature of Hate. Followed by a visit with artist Alix Smith, who is traveling the country photographing hundreds of same-sex couples, challenging stereotypes and taking conventional portraiture to a new level.

Alix Smith: States of Union
Throughout its history, portraiture has been used to memorialize lineage and honor patriarchs and matriarchs. However, these depictions have focused almost exclusively on the heterosexual family unit. Photographer Alix Smith seeks to expand public perception by framing LGBT families into conventional portraits.

The Nature of Hate
As has been the case for many social and political minorities in our country, the LGBT community confronts a media landscape effective in spreading misinformation about it. The most radical voices claim that gay and lesbian people are a threat to children, our country, even our way of life. But what many don’t realize is that these messages, crafted by a well-resourced media machine, not only inspire bias, but intense hate against LGBT people—hate often leading to violence. In our lead segment, we look at hate-speech and whether, in a nation lacking legal protections for LGBT people, it incites violence against the LGBT community.

Dismantling Hate will begin airing April 1st. To find out when it airs in your local area, to stream or download it, go to the IN THE LIFE website:




We believe in FULL & EQUAL RIGHTS for ALL Americans with no exceptions.

Throughout history artists have lent their creative expression to the ideas and issues that shape life in our communities, our country and our world. The MANIFEST EQUALITY Gallery gathers together a diverse array of hundreds of the nation’s most talented visual artists under one roof to celebrate that role and join with our gay (LGBT) friends, family members and co-workers to demand full and equal rights for all Americans.

The  MANIFEST EQUALITY Gallery, issues an inspiring, visual call-to-action, with hundreds of artists motivating public energy toward true reform on a local, state and national level.