Why You Can’t Get Married: An Unwedding Album

Why You Can’t Get Married: An Unwedding Album


Nava Atlas


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"This limited edition artist’s book examines the issue of same-sex marriage through the lens of the past. The very arguments used to oppose interracial marriage in generations past have been recycled for use against same-sex marriage. Comparing state codes, legal opinions, public hearings, and political pronouncements, it becomes apparent that the arguments aren’t just similar, but nearly identical. The book ends with Mildred Loving’s statement on the 40th anniversary of the 1967 Supreme Court decision, Loving vs. Virginia, which legalized interracial marriage in all fifty states. She stated in part, 'I believe all Americans, no matter their race, no matter their sexual orientation, should have [the] freedom to marry.' The Unwedding Album’s prettiness stands in stark contrast to the ugliness of the language of bias framed within, a reminder that there’s still a way to go to before the right to marry by same-sex couples is a given. As even in the wake of the 2015 Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage in all fifty states, continued efforts to roll it back with 'religious freedom' laws make it clear that universal acceptance is not yet at hand." - Nava Atlas


Nava Atlas (self-published)


Marriage, equality, religion, interracial, LGBT


9.25” h by 14” w (closed); 9.25” h by 35” w (open)


Digital offset artist’s book




Gatefold with double wire-o binding



Other Information

Hardbound edition of 25; Softcover edition of 300. More information can be found here: https://www.navaatlasart.com/featured/why-you-cant-get-married-an-unwedding-album/

Exhibit Location

This work was featured in the Cornell Fine Arts Museum as a part of the exhibition “Common Ground: Selected Works from The Rollins Book Arts Collection” from September 18, 2021 – December 31, 2021.

Why You Can’t Get Married: An Unwedding Album