M&C Saatchi London worked with Queer Britain to officially launch the UK’s first LGBTQ+ museum at Granary Square, Kings Cross, with a new campaign, ‘The Place To Be Seen’. The launch is part of M&C Saatchi’s longstanding partnership with the charity.

The museum’s first physical home opened officially on 20th July with its inaugural exhibition, ‘We Are Queer Britain’. The show includes artefacts such as Oscar Wilde’s prison cell door, the stage outfit that Years and Years’ Olly Alexander came out in, and a rainbow Hijab.

M&C Saatchi supported the museum’s official opening with a campaign, ‘The Place To Be Seen’, that leans into the importance of visibility for LGBTQ+ people, culture and history.

The campaign, which is running across out-of-home, digital and social channels, does not lead on the rainbow as its visual cue. Instead, honouring the 50th anniversary of the UK’s first Pride March, it draws on protest placards for a strong typographic solution that acknowledges both the power and importance of visibility, but also the joy of self-worth and self-acceptance it can help promote.

Ben Golik, Chief Creative Officer, M&C Saatchi London, says, “Most museums are places people go to see things. But this is a museum where queer people go to be seen. Our campaign champions the visibility of queer culture, history and people made possible at Britain’s first LGBTQ+ museum. It’s about visibility, validation and valuing the community’s stories.”

Despite advances in LGBTQ+ visibility and acceptance, homophobic hate crimes are on the rise in Britain. UK Government numbers on police-recorded hate crimes (published 26 November 2021) show hate crimes related to sexual orientation increased by 324% in the ten years to 2021; and recorded hate crimes against transgender people increased by 789% in the same period. And these worrying numbers continue to trend upward. This is despite the fact the most recent Galop report into Hate Crime (2021) reports just 1 in 8 LGBTQ+ victims report hate crimes to police.

As Golik explains, “The need for visibility remains vital, and having a permanent physical space for queer people and allies is an important step forward. Plus, having proud queer faces on posters across London means the launch campaign itself supports the museum’s own objectives.”

On-screen talent includes cast from break-out Netflix hit Heartstopper (Tobie Donovan; Kizzy Edgell), TV personalities such as Dr Ranj Singh, Drag Race UK alumni including Kitty Scott-Claus, Ella Vaday and Bimini Bon Boulash, non-binary journalist and activist Jamie Windust (@jamie_windust) and leading queer TikTokers such as Grace Barry (@gkbarry), Maddie Grace Jepson (@maddiegracejepson) and Bel Priestly (@belpriestly).

M&C Saatchi has also turned its ‘The Place To Be Seen’ campaign into a range of merchandise to be sold in the museum’s shop, to help continue to fundraise and support the museum’s ongoing costs.

To find out more, visit M&C Saatchi.