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OPEN STUDIO: A CELEBRATION OF CHICAGO'S DRAG SCENE

OPEN STUDIO: A CELEBRATION OF CHICAGO'S QUEER NIGHTLIFE & DRAG SCENE

On June 11 at Mana Contemporary, Full Spectrum Features presents the spectacle of a drag show in a totally new light -- as a work of art to be explored and intimately appreciated. Visitors can walk around the stage and sets, and interact with drag performers in full/partial costume who will be featured throughout the event in "durational performances."

This exhibition will be an interactive installation, taking place in a hand-crafted movie set. The elaborate set piece will evoke a "heaven-and-hell" themed nightclub, including a church confessional, a stage with a neon sign that reads “Church,” as well as other details inspired by religious iconography. We will paint backdrops to reenact tableaux of famous paintings, and have extras and performers in themed costumes such as "Adam and Eve" and "nuns and priests."

All of the performers are queer, trans, people of color, and other marginalized people who are largely underrepresented in films, and who have historically been excluded from mainstream religion. The characters have non-hetero/mainstream relationships, such as Dominant and submissive (D/s) and other kinky relationships. This project sheds a positive light and representation on these often shamed and taboo consensual relationships and draws comparison to religious and spiritual practices and BDSM.

BACKGROUND NOTE: This open studio exhibit will be the culminating event of a week-long film shoot. The film is written by Molly Hewitt, a local writer/director/performer/drag artist, and tells the story of Trinity, a queer girl from Chicago, who attends a life-changing drag show called “CHURCH”. This drag show explores sexuality and spirituality, two of the primary themes of the film.

Funded by Chicago, IL (June 2017)