Tag Archives: Queer

Big Queer Art Show! ReMix: ReFraming Appropriation at SOMArts – QCC’s 15th Anniversary

It’s Big. It’s Queer. It’s Arty as All Get Out. It’s ReMix: Reframing Appropriation at SOMArts Gallery, and it’s opening Friday and running through June.

Join the Queer Cultural Center in a Reunion of 15 years of visual arts programs housed at SOMArts!  There will, of course, be libations to take us into the next 15 years and special recognition of those who have participated in exhibitions from FACE (1998) to QIY (2011) and the curators, funders and supporting organizations that made these shows happen!

Wear your best outfits, pick up your nametags at the door and come back to SOMArts for a fabulous Visual Arts Reunion!

ReMix: ReFraming Appropriation mines 15 years of National Queer Arts Festival exhibitions towards understanding the centrality of the act of appropriation for queer art of the recent past.  Using appropriation as its lens, it sifts through all the art exhibited over the last 15 years, selecting those works for redisplay that map the parameters of queer appropriation as it has evolved through to today.

Curated by Jonathan D. Katz, former Board Member and one of the first curators of the National Queer Arts Festival, ReMix: ReFraming Appropriation in essence appropriates years of appropriations in order to both articulate and enact how queer politics so often turns on making familiar images and ideas ventriloquize new politics, new identities, and new utopias. This show revisits some of the many powerful works exhibited since the inception of the National Queer Arts Festival 15 years ago and remixes them in an effort to isolate a key theme of queer art making since at least the 1990s: appropriation. Appropriation—taking over of an extant cultural form to make it speak in a new voice—has long been a queer strategy. It’s a way of remaking dominant culture from within, as queers often do; most of us were born of a straight world, yet found a way to carve out meanings that spoke to us even if they were not intended by the larger culture. Notably, the exhibition is itself an example of the phenomenon it investigates, for it appropriates previous exhibitions–and curatorial visions–to new effect, allowing these varied works, all previously seen, to return in a new form, with new meanings. It queers the queer.

Malay Gays face Conservative Islamic Foes…but are backed by Islamic Renaissance Friends

As Malaysia moves into its election season, religious conservatives in the Islamic majority country are using the “proliferation of the LGBT problem” as a political weapon. According to an article in the Bay Area Reporter: “A large anti-LGBT demonstration is scheduled in Dataran Merdeka Square, Kuala Lumpur on April 21.” That is Saturday. Gay Malaysians have good reason for concern. They also have some interesting friends. House speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia recently rejected a motion that would have banned LGBT people from serving in Parliament. International outcry derailed a move to ban representation of unconventional sexualities in publicly funded media. And Dr. Ahmad Fuad Rahmat of the Islamic Renaissance Front is explicit in his support. He says, in a passionate defense of the (successfully) banned Queer Arts Festival Seksualiti Merdeka: “We are living in a heterogeneous society full of diversity. In order for a society to mature, it must be able to remodel itself to be inclusive in nature. There should be no discrimination based on gender or sexual orientation, irrespective of race and religion. Every single citizen has the right to live and express his or her conviction without fear.” Hear, hear! Click here for the entire text. As of this writing, sodomy is punishable in Malaysia by up to twenty years in prison. For something fun and sexy (homoerotic sandwich cookies!) from Malaysia, here.

Queer Kids: Photos by M. Sharkey

photo: M.Sharkey

More here: Queer Kids: A Project. A photo series by M. Sharkey. via Palm Trees & Bare Feet

Signs o’ the Times: #Occupy Movement Signage Slideshow #OWS

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“I’ll believe corporations are people when Texas executes one!” Some of the best signs of this movement are hand-painted. And desktop designers and pros alike are busy producing sharp propaganda. This is a networked, global movement, with hundreds of local hubs and new websites launching daily. The Occupy Together site offers free posters for download. Designers may also upload their own work for others to use in regional protests.

For naked artists occupying Wall Street in advance of the current occupation, click here. For a statement from the de facto HQ, and a simpatico marine, here. For the Walmart bleacher, who may or may not be an activist, here. And for slide shows of sexy revolutionaries, here and here.

Going Gaga for Jo Calderone

When an androgynous male model named Jo Calderone appeared in Vogue Homme Japan last year, celeb watchers noted that he looked a lot like Lady Gaga might in male drag. Turns out, that is exactly who “he” was. The young diva, who dodges regular rumors that she is intersex, shows off Jo on the cover art of her next single, “You and I.” You Go, Guy Gaga!

Running The Gauntlet – Jim Ward Book Event at Mr. S Leather

Jim Ward at LDG, May 2011. Photo: Gay Highwaymen

Friend of this site Jim Ward founded The Gauntlet, and is widely regarded as the grand-daddy of the modern body piercing phenomenon. Now he has published a history. In May, he spoke to a packed room at The Leathermen’s Disscussion Group in San Francisco. Running the Gauntlet—An Intimate History of the Modern Body Piercing Movement tells the detailed story of “how Jim discovered his own fascination with body piercing and went on to found the industry.” Full of wonderful and terrible stories and amazing photographs, it includes details of his friendship with the heavily pierced and very gay Louis Rove – the adoptive father of the notorious Carl Rove. Other interesting bits include how the color purple came to signify piercing in the hanky code, and how he was collared to his long-term partner and Master, Drew Ward.

On Saturday, July 16th, 2011, from 1 to 5 pm, Jim will be at Mr. S Leather , signing books and chatting. Mr. S is at 385 8th St at Harrison in San Francisco, four blocks south of the Civic Center BART Station. If you can’t make it to the book event, and you want a copy, you can order one at the Running The Gauntlet website, here. Jim will even sign it for you.

Glitter Emergency and More at Frameline’s 35th SF LGBT Film Fest

It is the middle of the SF LGBT Film Festival, high holy days are underway in the City by the Bay, Pride is coming,  and outside the festival’s host venues, gay film buffs are rubbing their bleary eyes after marathon sessions in the dark. The cinematic apparatus, not that other dark! There is something for everyone at this annual festival, now in its 35th year. The shorts programs are some of the best, and for those with short attention spans, are just the ticket. One film is not doing it for you? Wait 5 minutes. The next one could be all that.

“All that glitters is indeed gold in this wonderful collection of shorts featuring several gems from our very own Bay Area filmmakers… Take a look at disgusting alien bodies and eavesdrop on the deaf relay system. Follow a camera off a bridge in a memorial for lives lost. A dispute on the high seas can only be settled by a dance off (of course), and we’ll see just how campy an AIDS camp can be. Rounding out the program is a silent comedy set to Tchaikovsky and starring Peggy the Peg-leg Ballerina.” via festival director Jennifer Morris

“Glitter Emergency” shows at the Victoria Theatre, 9:30 pm on Tuesday, June 21st, 2011. The Victoria is located at 2961 16th Street in the  Mission district. Built in 1908 as a Vaudeville House, it is the oldest operating theatre in San Francisco.