Queers Just Wanna Have Fun II

An online Exhibition 

Juried by The Queerly Collective Team

 

With a global pandemic, genocide, racism, endless "phobias" of other humans, and many more gut-wrenching aspects continuing to blight our lives, we at Queerly Collective decided to do another year of Queers Just Wanna Have Fun. We all need to be and feel seen and heard, especially now. We created this exhibition to showcase pieces we feel exude joy in one way or another. Whether the artist felt joy creating it, joy is the emotion it provokes, or joy can be found somewhere in-between.

 

We would like to thank you for the extraordinary number of submissions we received. With this being our annual exhibition we are thrilled by the prospects for our future at Queerly Collective, as well as the ways in which we are able to serve the queer artists and makers community. We would not exist without our predecessors and without each and every one of you. Thank you for joining us in this journey, and giving us the ability to showcase these international artists. We will continue to mirror the world we desire to exist in and fight for our collective voices and visions to be seen and heard. We are humbled to be in service to our community. 

* = Juror's Pick

Gan_Submission1pt1.jpg
Gan_Submission1pt2.jpg

WELCOME HOME CUBBYHOLE + WELCOME HOME GINGERS

Leanne Gann/ Digital/ 1200 X 1200 PX or 6’’ X 9’’ Print/ 2020

DURING THE PANDEMIC, I MISSED HOME IN MANY DIFFERENT WAYS. I’VE GROWN ACCUSTOMED TO LIVING ON THE OPPOSITE COAST OF MY IMMEDIATE FAMILY, ONLY BECAUSE I GOT TO BE A PART OF DIFFERENT FAMILY EVERY NIGHT I VISITED THESE SPACES. THESE PIECES REFLECT

 

MY LOVE AND SENSE OF HOME I FEEL WHENEVER I GO TO THE CUBBY- HOLE, GINGER’S BAR, AND HENRIETTA HUDSON.

Instagram

 

COME INSIDE CUBBYHOLE + COME INSIDE HENRIETTA HUDSON

Leanne Gann/ Digital/ 1200 X 1200 PX or 6’’ X 9’’ Print/ 2020

2a
2b

 

Bejeweled VII (top)

Lauren Darrouzet/ Sterling Silver, Mirrored Acrylic, Resin, Vintage Swarovski Crystals, Sugru, Holographic Film, Steel/ 2.5” x 2.5” 0.5”/ 2020

Bejeweled V (middle)

Lauren Darrouzet/ Sterling Silver, Acrylic, Resin, Holographic Glitter, Cubic Zirconia, Steel/ 2” x 2” x 0.5”/ 2020

Bejeweled VIII (bottom)

Lauren Darrouzet/ Sterling Silver, Mirrored Acrylic, Resin, Vintage Swarovski Crystals, Sugru, Holographic Film, Steel/ 2.5” x 2.5” 0.5”/ 2020

My research explores childhood memories and nostalgia. I investigate longing, control, and delight in relationship to the act of collecting objects during my youth. In my recent work, references to the time in which I grew up, the 1990’s, appear in both subtle and familiar ways. Combining plastic materials, vivid colors, kinetic elements, and bright stones, my work encapsulates the joy I felt when searching for the perfect accessory.

Whether poring over physical objects like stones, stickers, and miniatures or wandering through my vast collections of memories, the process of making these pieces has allowed me to reexamine my childhood self and psyche. Obtaining and organizing these treasures created a sense of order in a chaotic world. The creation of this work fulfills a part of me that longs for my past – a time when life was much simpler and less complicated. The meditative act of designing and embellishing my work allows me to connect with the person I once was, which gives life to colorful, reflective, and playful ornamentation.

 

Website

Instagram

A wise woman once said ‘nobody cares and you won’t shut up’

Cat Gunn/ Acrylic, Oil, Alkyd, and Glitter on Canvas on Panel/ 24’’ x 20’’/ 2019

My work highlights moments of my life that are romantic, sentimental, nostalgic, and tragic. Through abstraction I create an underlying narrative of growing up queer and non-binary transgender, forming relationships, falling in and out of love, and examining the world around me. Many of my paintings derive from the experience of navigating space in a world where the gender binary is ingrained into many aspects. These selected works specifically highlight moments of my life in which my identity had been acknowledged, validated, and respected. My paintings revolve around the notion of creating space from a queer perspective with a playful awkwardness. These self-contained worlds are made up of repeating stripes, gradated forms, twisted squiggles, and organic shapes. Skewed geometry with hard edges flirt with expressive grounds and fields of color, creating an ambiguous space that is dizzying, strange, and dynamic. The quirky geometry and irregularity of patterns allow for vulnerable and imperfect moments, and are equally about sameness as they are about difference. The work, both as physical objects and as windows into an illusionistic world, suggests a transfer between states— erratic and ever-evolving.

 

Website

Instagram

6

All the places I want to go

Athena Nemeth/ Beads, Thread, and Postage Stamps/ 2020

What is important in my art practice is to work with degradable material. I like to find discarded or old objects that I can dissect and rip apart and turn into a completely different foreign object you wouldn’t imagine. I love to work with thread because it has this connection to being domesticated but at the same time it is becoming an area of art that is contemporary and new and people are pushing themselves in new mediums to portray.


Instagram

Squishamals

Gianna Zaro/ Gouache/ 9’’ x 12’’/ 2020

The shift to online has been a difficult change for many, but also not one without its positive effects. Covid-19 took away our ability to connect in person, but groups of people who share a common interest have been able to stay connected through technology. For those who use rope-tying as a release and escape from daily life; they need their fellow community members to come together and search for effective ways that they can all stay connected.

 

The conversations that I was able to have with riggers and rope bunnies served as inspiration for the gouache prints that I created. I was graciously given photographs of the interviewee’s favorite ties; either that they had done, or had done onto them. These photographs became the basis of the paintings.

Website

Instagram

8
9a

Bloobity Blopp

Heather S. Nuber/ Glass, Copper, Body, Surroundings/ Image 7’’ x 2.5” Object- 3.5’’ x 3’’ x 6.5” Body- 23’’ x 17’’ x 69.5” Surroundings- Infinite/ 2021

As an inter-disciplinary artist, my work focuses on the dynamics of personal relationships, and social interactions through the expression of form, and exploration of materials. Bloobity Blopp and Bloppity Bloob are part of a larger study, which combines glass with copper and other materials. In making these objects, I considered themes of constraint, restraint, expansion, and freedom. As the maker, I can try to coax, direct and frame the glass, but each new work brings joyous discoveries. The materials are a reflection of who we are as queer folx. We are strong and fragile, bound yet boundless, transparent and opaque, malleable until immovable; light and beauty are reflected onto the world through us.


Instagram

 

Bloppity Bloob

Heather S. Nuber/ Glass, Copper, Body, Surroundings/ Image 7’’ x 2.5” Object- 4.25’’ x 4.5’’ x 7” Body- 23’’ x 17’’ x 69.5” Surroundings- Infinite/ 2021

9b
10
11

 

Shadow Puppet Theater (top)

Frankie Modesto/ Oil on canvas/ 48’’ x 60’’/ 2021

Freedom to Want (bottom)

Frankie Modesto/ Oil on Canvas/ 60’’ x 36’’/ 2021

My name is Frankie Modesto and I am an artist originally from rural Pennsylvania, now residing in Philadelphia. I approach many of my paintings in a diaristic way. For me, inspiration comes from my friends, loved ones, and the desire to archive my experiences and time with them. In my recent paintings, I immortalize these memories of friendship and intimacy, and imagine moments that have not yet happened. With a focus on the interpersonal relationships between figures, both humans and animals alike whisper, gossip, laugh, and perform, creating narratives of their own within my paintings.

 

Love is the driving force in my work. As my dreams and memories merge with the physical world, ordinary expressions of love are reimagined into a world of fantasy. The resulting stories are romanticized, dramatic, and look ahead with a desperate sense of optimism.


Instagram

The Wilds

Wesley Haack/ Digitally-Edited Photography / 8” x 12”/ 2021

Art- This is art for a world that makes you sick. When you are brought close to Death and immersed in pain, when you collapse from Injustice and your eyes are held too far open, that is when this art will speak to you. It will erase rigid binaries by building soft forms from hard lines, deconstruct power by conveying beauty through brutality and refuse fear by refusing to hide. This art rejects colonial definitions and structures of gender, love, power and fear. It embraces bodies in all their shame and celebrates the presence of Death in nature and all things.This is art that does not ignore reality; it seeks to change it.

 

Me- I am a transgender artist, activist and real life human being! I have lived all around California since being born in the small town of Bishop, and now I live in a community of artists in Oakland, California. I am primarily a self-taught artist with a B.S. in Biology from Fresno State, where I also received some technical training in taxidermy and printmaking. In addition to these mediums, I am also a tattoo apprentice!

 

Me+Art- My queerness has a strong influence on my art and I often draw inspiration from the resilience and beauty of my community. I also find inspiration in the secrets I unearth when I take things apart and put them back together. Most of all, I find these muses when I stay still and learn to listen to the world around me.

 

Website

Instagram

13.jpeg

Self-Made

Wyatt Nestor-Pasicznyk/ Vitreous Enamel on 24k Gold Plated Copper/ 3 1⁄2’’ x 2 1⁄2’’/ 2021

I seek out the impulse to create my own mythology; personalized and concerned with identity and authenticity. The characters I portray romanticize the boldness and roughness of rural experiences coupled with that of Queer and Gender-non-conforming experiences. As a queer and trans masc person, this is something that comes into play in my body of work as a whole. My work explores the transition from its narrative form of story telling to tangible objects in the form of jewelry. In this work I utilize a variety of metalsmithing techniques such as champlevé, enameling and traditional bench work.

 

These characterizations of narration and story telling through queer folk tales are activated by translating my illustrations into body adornment. This imagery is indicative of folk art and is heavily influenced by the rural American wilderness. My work explores how certain stereotypes can be broken to fit a different narrative that pertains to transgender people as both makers and artists. There can be more recognition and appreciation for queer and rural identities by recontextualizing these narrations into wearable jewelry.

 

Website

Instagram

Queer Platonic Butterflies, for Nikki

Amanda Vergara/ Watercolor/ 9’’ x 12’’/ 2020

Each of these pieces was personalized for and given to a loved one. I had moved from Minneapolis to Los Angeles in late 2019, just months before the Stay at Home Order took effect; I wanted to express gratitude to my queer community through art when I was feeling isolated both by the quarantine and having few connections in a new city. I self-learned watercolor through creating pieces that my friends specifically requested from me. Creating art was my way of providing community care for my friends and nurturing my inner child.

 

My current body of work explores the themes of freedom and joy, as well as my appreciation for nature. I am drawn to dreamy, vibrant colors, and I love romanticizing the mundane.


Instagram

14
15

Transcendent Gentleness

Juliana Naufel/ Embroidery on Photograph/ 3.7” x 4.7”/ 2020

I create my pieces because I am on a healing journey. By stitching new stories on long lost forgotten photographs, I found my voice and discovered how to use my own power to overcome trauma and take better care of myself. While the traumas experienced in my lifetime were out of my control, I feel I now have the choice, the responsibility and the power to forgive and mend the causes of pain in my past.

I am passionate about things that take strength from their own fragility - the understanding that what society usually considers fragile is in fact the quite opposite intrigues me. Portraits showing vulnerability, tenderness and affection are my favorite ones to work with. Embroidering photographs might seem subtle and delicate, however, to me, it is a powerful practice. I am poking holes and suturing through forgotten memories, an act that cannot be undone. Dealing with personal feelings always shows me how in fact they are universal and that in the end we are all connected. From time to time, my work travels around the world, and I’ve been a part of some amazing group and solo shows in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, France, Portugal, Spain and the U.S.A. Most often the themes were related to art & feminism or concepts of time & memory.

 

Website

Instagram

Semiotic Desktop

Sophia Hansen/ Video/ 2020

I am an Interdisciplinary Artist and Fine Arts Studio major, with a concentration in Sculpture. I regularly work with a variety of mediums both analog and digital in my drawing, collage, installation, and video works.

 

My sensory experience in the world is the primary foundation for my artistic work, and I use my practice as a way to explore myself, my identity, my relationship to technology, as well as the world. I have synesthesia, and with the particular way my senses blend, I experience letters, words, & pieces of music as complete compositions, with their own sense of movement, space, form, texture, and color. My play with those elements in my work is in large part informed by the unique combinations of texture, form, movement, and color I experience.

 

Curiosity and experimentation are also huge forces within my work, I enjoy learning new techniques and methods of making and derive inspiration from combining analog and digital manners creation. With the restrictions imposed by the pandemic, I turned to create digitally rather than with traditional analog techniques. I started pushing programs to their limits and using aesthetics and parts of the programs used for digital creation within the finished works themselves. I am interested in exploiting the way the program is wired to create layered, disorienting pieces. I find the glitches in technology infinitely more interesting than when everything is working perfectly.

 

Website

Instagram

16

Ann Smith’s Platter (top)

Coco Raymond/ Ceramic/ 6” x 6”/ 2019

Big Wet Bastard Tumbler (middle)

Coco Raymond/ Ceramic/ 6.5” x 4”/ 2018

Wondrous Love (bottom)

Coco Raymond/ Ceramic/ 11” x 5”/ 2021

I view myself as equal parts artisan and artist. As the child of a craftsperson and a sculptor, I have a deep respect for the process of creation in and of itself, as well as the significance of communication through creativity. I am committed to well-made, functional work; however, I rarely go into a piece without the weight of my identity and experiences behind me. My work is inevitably informed by my relationships with my home, gender, size, queerness, and disability. As a folk musician and memorykeeper in a rapidly homogenizing world, as well as a fourteenth-generation Cape Codder, I'm heavily inspired by traditional symbolism and folk art and dedicated to its preservation in the modern day — everything from sailors’ tattoos to the mano cornuto to scrimshaw-inspired carvings of local marine life shows up in my work.

 

Despite my traditional roots, much of my work reflects the influence of the boundary-pushing women and LGBTQ+ artists I have been exposed to throughout my life, which I pay tribute to by merging my folk sensibilities with cheerful pop aesthetics. This combination, while perhaps seemingly incongruous, is a union of two of the most fundamental elements of me: a rural queer, dedicated to celebrating both my culture and my identity.

 

Website

Instagram

19a
19b
19c

When They Jump *

Fan Zhang/ Silver/ 3.5'' x 3.2'' 0.6''x 0.3'' x 0.2''/ 2019

I always feel a sense of distance and fear when standing in front

of the imposing solidity of giant buildings and installations, but at the same time, the movement and dynamism I see after closer examination brings me joy and curiosity. These contradictory feelings inspire me to make miniature sculptures and wearable jewelry so that I can shrink my fear to a human-scaled size. The process of making and contemplating allows me to gain more control over the world around me. I like turning clay, resin, leather, fabric, wood, and especially metal into different objects, and watching different possibilities becoming a reality.

 

Before becoming a jewelry artist/designer, I had a strong interest in mathematics. This drove me to think about different possibilities in degrees and centimeters when designing my art projects. Four years of working with my hands in studios helped me to understand the mechanical theories of objects around me, like how hinges and cars work. These experiences pushed me to think more accurately and creatively. I assemble pieces of metal and other materials in many layers that can be opened to reveal multiple uses or made interactive with moveable parts.

Instagram

Interior/exterior

Fan Zhang/ Silver, Peridot/ 2'' x 1.5'' x 2.2'' 0.5'' x 0.3'' x 0.4''/ 2019

20b
20a

Who’s There Now?

Hilary Greenstein/ Oil and Latex on Canvas/ 83” x 34”/ 2020

I draw femme figures from strangers’ found personal photos. I mine our collective, intimate histories for protagonists I can paint into magical realist spaces outside time. I use painting to blur lines between reality and fiction, care and harm, self and other. I use paint for its veiling effect, for its ability to seduce while resisting easy answers. In this transformation I am looking for new ways to order relationships between bodies (and gazes) in space. When figures come together they merge and mirror, healing across the empty space that separates them.

 

Website

Instagram

21

Love in the Suburbs

Henry Evan Thomas/ Bronze-cast Cross, House Paint, Pansies, Wood/ 72” x 24” x 48”/ 2021

My current body of work focuses on intimate queer experiences and identity translated into various materials. Using various plants and plant motifs, I want to create a sense of time passing, growth, and resilience to my work that mirrors the queer experience at various stages of life. Using modes of painting, sculpting, and digital manipulation and assistance throughout all of my work, I aspire to appropriate the objects of antiquity and class to juxtapose them with the materiality and function of the everyday, as I am inspired by both objects reminiscent of high wealth, but also objects of labor and material history.


Instagram

Boot Fantasy

Jonathan Virginia Green/ Oil on Drop Cloth/ 9’ x 12’/ 2020

Pleasure is a tool of queer survival. I use my work to explore mechanisms of desire, pleasure, and transformation that oriented within my experience as person who is queer and transgender. My practice includes painting, drawing and video which I choose as vehicles for exploring intimacy in the process of making. The direct contact made with the surface of a painting or the close-up shots in a video are examples of this. My work heavily references leathersexuality. I am interested in the overlapping qualities between painting and leather. As practices they are driven by aesthetics, invested in material, and can be vehicles for exploring other psychological states. There is joy, an erotic abandon in both practices that I try to enhance by blending them together. Within the work I search to depict a moment when a subject moves from one state (physical or psychological) to another, captivated by the poetic power of transformation.

 

Website

Instagram

23
24
25

Samira (top)

James Clarke/ Embroidery on Linen/ 20 cm x 20 cm/ 2020

SAWAYAMA (bottom)

James Clarke/ Embroidery on Linen/ 12 cm x 21 cm/ 2021

I am an embroidery artist from London, UK. I started embroidering after I graduated university in summer 2019, but it became a real passion of mine over the various lockdowns the UK has had over the last year. Being both a calming distraction and a way to celebrate the queer community, I also find it reflects my experience as a queer person: the otherness that comes with embroidery when considered against more mainstream mediums, and that comes with using traditional techniques to capture modern subjects both echo my own feelings of queer otherness. The subjects of these portraits have brought great joy in their own work, as has the process of making these pieces.


Instagram

26a
26b
26c

Memento Mori I (left)

Angela Masker/ Oil on canvas/ 10” x 10”/ 2020

Memento Mori II (middle)

Angela Masker/ Oil on canvas/ 10” x 10”/ 2021

Memento Mori III (right)

Angela Masker/ Oil on canvas/ 10” x 10”/ 2021

My work centers around self, memory, and personal experience. Almost all of my works are self portraits -- my own face and body serve as reflections of thoughts and emotions that I grapple with. However, they are often depicted in ways that allow viewers to project their own story onto them. Each piece acts as a documentation or an entry in a non-verbal diary of sorts. Like pages in a diary, the works are small and intimate; one must get up close and personal to view them.

 

These three pieces were the first paintings that I worked on during quarantine. I had gone several months without working on art up until then and this project was the catalyst for getting back in touch with my passion for drawing and painting. The solace that I found in creating art brought me joy and fulfillment during a difficult and complicated year.


Instagram

Decomposition (top)

Rachel Rothberg/ Mixed Media/ 22” x 30”/ 2021

Rest (bottom)

Rachel Rothberg/ Oil on Canvas/ 36” x 48”/ 2020

My larger-than-death oil paintings of deceased birds examine both the tension and tenderness that exists within mortality. I am drawn to the deaths of birds due to my personal experiences of loss and grief and the poignance of losing a small life. Observing environmental patterns reaching back for millenia reminds me of the beauty that can be found in death, and that life always finds a way to emerge. A Song Sparrow is surrounded by lush foliage and berries in its death. A Red-breasted Nuthatch laid to rest becomes larger than life, almost confrontationally. I intend to bring viewers face-to-face with the interconnected nature of the world to bring empathy towards these delicate avian subjects at a global turning point for ecological conservation.

 

My compassion and stewardship towards the environment can be definitively traced to my childhood amidst the biodiversity of the California Bay Area. I have always been driven to share my curiosity and concern for the natural world with others. I am influenced heavily by my background in biology and ornithology, and I use academic research, field observations, and outreach to the scientific community to inform my work. My paintings combine a background of detailed biological illustration with painterly techniques to communicate fragile ecological balances to my audience.

 

Website

Instagram

Crinkle Top (top)

Kate Davidson/ Beech, Spalted Beech, Ebony/ 48” (L) x 13” (D) x 36” (H)/ 2017

Holding Itself Together (bottom)

Kate Davidson/ Walnut, Cotton, Thread/ 55” (L) x 20” (W) x 12” (H)/ 2020

My practice centers on tension and balance. Using lines of wood I make borders that delineate space, and by filling these shapes with different media I control their weight and directionality. The bend of a curve or a grain pattern can push the eye and the energy one way or another. A sudden pop of color, change of angle, or transition of material can arrest or divert this motion, causing tension to bottle up, explode, or simply melt away.

 

My initial sketched forms are graphic and geometric. Through small changes I transform these ordinary shapes into sculptural objects, introducing a unique internal logic that governs each work and continues to apply as the design evolves. These guides may involve a repeating set of measurements, a color story, or a hierarchy of parts. But while the piece might become irregular, these rules mean that it does not become random. In each one I try to find the point where despite all the individual elements being under tension, the overall work becomes balanced, even cathartic. I want the details to feel like calculated parts of a larger mathematical equation, one that is complex but inherently solvable.

 

Website

Instagram

Smoke Signals

Tyler Sorgman/ Acrylic, Marker, and Charcoal on Canvas/ 3’ x 3’/ 2020/ $2,500

Tyler Sorgman is interested in exploring how the landscape can act as a symbol for the psychological. Sorgman’s recent work includes imagery of plant growth, mountain ranges, storms, and forest fires. A solitary home is often set into these imagined spaces. The scenes Sorgman creates are meant to feel both playful yet perilous; dreamy yet uneasy.

 

Throughout Sorgman’s body of work, there is a play between flatness, depth, and the simplification of complex forms. He builds up layers of paint through repetitive marks and symbols, and sees their accumulation as a reflection of his thoughts, feelings, and anxieties at the time of each individual work’s creation.

 

Website

Instagram

31