New York, New York
Gottschalk grew up in the Lower East side where her mother operated a beauty parlour since the 1950s. In the 1960s, she studied illustration at the High School of Art and Design. Through school, she met other lesbians who took her to iconic lesbian bars. She also became involved in the Gay Liberation Front.
Gottschalk was not a photojournalist or a documentary photographer but has been taking photos since she was 17. Her work is shown for the first time in the exhibition BRAVE, BEAUTIFUL OUTLAWS: The Photographs of Donna Gottschalk curated by Deborah Bright at the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art from August 29, 2018. Some of Gottschalks photographs have been published in the Gay Liberation Front newspaper. Her photos were in storage for 40 years. The subjects of Gottschalk's photos are her friends, family and roommates.
Photojournalist Diana Davies took a photo of Gottschalk at the 1970 Christopher Street Liberation Day parade that shows her holding a sign reading: "I am your worst fear I am your best fantasy".
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