In Heroes We Trust and Rainbow Walls present The Streets Are Queer, a group show of North American street artists who identify as Queer. This
is billed as a first-of-its-kind show, bringing together artists who create and express their individual identities within the Queer spectrum by spray painting, wheat pasting, and slap tagging the streets of North America. The show is curated by Homo Riot, a Los Angeles-based street artist who was called the “Godfather” of Queer Street Art in a recent issue of Los Angeles Magazine.
“The roots of modern street art and graffiti are very Queer, though that’s rarely acknowledged. Many pioneers of street art and public interventions in the 1970’s and 80’s were Queer, such as David Wojnarowicz, and Keith Haring, and some of the most politically-effective street art was done by Queer artists collectives like Gran Fury and Fierce Pussy,” says Daniel “Dusty” Albanese, photographer and street art documentarian.
Today’s Queer street artists are addressing an expanded range of issues and activism. From Trans rights and protections for LGBTQ immigrants and Queer POC, to continued demands for equal protection under the law and easier access to life saving HIV medications. But not all of the art in the show is political activism. Several artists express their Queerness through vibrant expressions of humour, camp, and celebration of community. Through bright figurative work, these artists examine freedom, identity, and intersectionality as well as body positivity and boundaries of sexuality, gender and race.
The show will include more than 25 artists from cities across North America including work by Homo Riot, Hugo Gyrl, Sickid, Jeff Cheung, The Postman, Jilly Ballistic, Little Ricky, David Puck, Xavier Schipani, Suriani, Diva Dog, AceTroy, Klo and Jeremy Novy among others. Each artist has a story to tell through their work and their presence on the street.
The work will be exhibited much as it is on the street with a scaled architectural building in the centre of the space covered in layers of Queer street art. Additionally, there will be Queer art banners, works by artists on canvas, murals and limited edition prints. The show will prove to be an immersive experience for those in attendance and will illuminate what it means to be a Queer street artist today. Events throughout the run of the show including artist’s talks, performances, live screen printing, and panel discussions on “The State of Queer Art” and “Censoring Queerness”.
In Heroes We Trust is an art gallery and creative space committed to the presentation of street and contemporary art. Gallery director Neely Shearer is the author of the book In Heroes We Trust: Street Artists and Their Heroes featuring 60 international street artists musing on their Heroes with a foreword by Ron English and preface by Jef Aerosol.
Rainbow Walls is a nonprofit supporting art and arts organizations and events that encourage and expand the visibility, acceptance, and inclusion of marginalized people, especially those identifying as LGBTQ.
The Streets Are Queer runs 9th November – 7th December 2019. Opening reception November 9, 5-9 PM 127 East 5th Street, Los Angeles, USA.