Believable: The Portraits of Lola Flash

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A stunning full-color collection of photographs, old and new, by the renowned photographer and LGBTQIA+ activist Lola Flash

Working at the forefront of genderqueer visual politics, celebrated photographer Lola Flash has become known for images that manage to both interrogate and transcend preconceptions about gender, sex, and race. Spurred by their experience as an active member of ACT UP and ART+ during the AIDS epidemic in New York City, their art is profoundly connected to their activism, fueling a lifelong commitment to visibility and preserving the legacy of queer communities, especially queer communities of color.

The seventeenth volume in a groundbreaking series of LGBTQ-themed photobooks from The New Press, Believable draws on the extraordinary body of work that Flash has created over four decades, from their iconic "Cross Colour" images from the 1980s and early 1990s to their more recent photography, which used the framework of Afrofuturism to examine the intersection of Black culture and technoculture and science fiction. Also included in the book are portraits that explore the impact of skin pigmentation on Black identity and consciousness, as well as people who have challenged traditional concepts of gender and trendsetters in the urban underground cultural scene.

In all their images, their passion for photography and their belief in the medium's ability to provide agency and freedom and initiate change shine through. For the first time, Believable brings together the remarkable work of this queer art icon.


Believable was designed by Emerson, Wajdowicz Studios (EWS).

About the Author

Lola Flash is a New York-based photographer. Their photographs have appeared in the New York Times, The Guardian, Ebony, and other publications and some of their work is part of the permanent collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Brooklyn Museum, and the Museum of Modern Art. The author of Believable (The New Press), they live in New York.

Praise for Believable:
"So sensual, so vivid, and always at the service of the art, Flash's work reminds us of what is possible in photography today."
--Cheryl Dunye, film director, The Watermelon Woman

"An important and vital document that will live beyond us."
--Zanele Muholi, photographer and visual artist

"Flash, through photography, becomes one of our generation's most needed and great seers."
--Pamela Sneed, author of Funeral Diva

"Celebrates self-love, survival, endurance, and the efforts toward a future that dismantles the horror of overt and institutional racism, sexism, and homophobia one frame at a time."
--Halima Taha, arts writer, advisor, and author of Collecting African American Art: Works on Paper and Canvas

Publisher: New Press
Pub date: February 28, 2023
160 pages
Format: Paperback