Museum of Transgender Hirstory & Art

MOTHA is dedicated to moving the hirstory and art of transgender people to the center of public life. The preeminent institution of its kind, the museum insists on an expansive and unstable definition of transgender, one that is able to encompass all trans and gender non-conformed art and artists.
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2013 Art Awards trophies

It is a great honor to present the awardees of the first annual 2013 MOTHA Art Awards! With just under 2700 votes and over 400 nominees throughout all categories, the individuals and the projects listed below have been chosen to be recognized for their outstanding contributions to the transgender cultural landscape, as it currently exists at this very specific time (2013ish) and place (North America, mostly).


Artists of the Year

Laverne Cox | Caldwell Linker | Amos Mac

Performers of the Year

Ivan Coyote | Red Durkin

Stage Productions of the Year

F.A.G.G.O.T.S. the musical | The Fully Functional Cabaret

Transition Vlogs of the Year

Red Durkin | We Happy Trans

Writers of the Year, Literary

Imogen Binnie | Kate Bornstein | Ivan Coyote

Writers of the Year, Critical

Janet Mock | Dean Spade

Artist Books/Publications of the Year

Nevada by Imogen Binnie | Original Plumbing magazine

Musicians of the Year

Big Freedia | KOKUMO | Rae Spoon

Hirstorians of the Year

Susan Stryker |

Archives of the Year

Center for Sex and Culture | Trans Oral History Project

Solo Exhibitions of the Year

“Body of Work” Heather Cassils | "HAG–small, contemporary, haggard" Vaginal Davis

Group Exhibitions of the Year

"Queers in Exile: the Unforgotten Legacies of LGBTQ Homeless Youth" curated by Alexis Heller | "Twat/fest" - Trans Women’s Arts Toronto Festival

Art Film/Video of the Year

MAJOR! | She Gone Rogue | Wildness

New Upcoming Artists of the Year

Hannah Barrett | Erika Bijeljic | Imogen Binnie | KOKUMO | Morgan M. Page

Unrecognized Artists of the Year, Hermit

Malic Amalya | Elliott DeLine | Raphaële Frigon | Nicki Green | Dalice Malice | H. Melt | Mirha-Soleil Ross | Thu Ha Vu | Tobaron Waxman | Quito Ziegler

Unrecognized Artists of the Year, Too Busy Surviving

Ben McCoy | Chelsea Manning | Morgan Sea

THE NOMINATION & VOTING PROCESS The award nomination period, which took place across September and October 2013, and the voting period, which occurred over the entire month of November 2013, were open to all who desired to participate. Voters were asked to make their choices based on their own thoughtful and thorough research of every single nominee in each category, and not to be motivated by nepotism or coercion. Ultimately, winners were selected because of their merit, because of their own enthusiastic online campaigning, because they were the most recognizable name on the list, or a combination of all of the above. The MOTHA Awards seek to highlight transgender contributions to our current cultural landscape while also highlighting the limitations inherent in such a system of competition, exclusion, tokenism, and positive-image pandering.

LETTER OF RECkoning In gratitude for participation the Executive Director of MOTHA has written a blank customizable letter of recommendation for use by all nominees and awardees. It is available HERE.

AN ARCHIVE OF NOMINEES Nominees are invited to email MOTHA ( with links to their online portfolios or personal web sites. That list will be compiled and made public, for posterity, here on the MOTHA web site.

* Awardees receive nothing but the title, and must determine for themselves if and to what extent it signifies recognition of the merit of their work. Due to the close number of votes in most instances, no distinction has been made between winners and finalists.


  1. glitterswitch reblogged this from hirstory and added:
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  6. jrvmajesty reblogged this from hirstory and added:
    HOORAY! CONGRATS CHICAGO LOVES! H. Melt, KOKUMO, Jen Richard, We Happy Trans* and the Trans Oral History Project!
  7. theklicker reblogged this from janetmock
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  9. morgansea reblogged this from hirstory and added:
    We did it, Raph and I made it to the finals as unrecognized artists. Thank you everybody who voted for us
  10. mosskitten reblogged this from janetmock
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  12. janetmock reblogged this from hirstory and added:
    Loving the depth of artists highlighted on the 2013 MOTHA Art Awards, particularly those I’m lucky to call my sisters +...
  13. originalplumbing reblogged this from hirstory and added:
    Original Plumbing has been named one of the Art Book/Publications of the year via Museum of Trans Hirstory & Art awards....
  14. bdgrmmr reblogged this from hirstory
  15. funinjejune reblogged this from hirstory and added:
    major FUCK YEAH for Ben McCoy and this morning she showed me the bangs headbands ps you should watch her youtube series...