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Archive: House of Ladosha
In the summer of 2012, undergraduate student at Parsons The New School for Design in New York City, Yulan Grant, had the idea to make a zine. Her theme: a visual history of baby hairs, a technique of gel-sculpting the wispy hairs at one’s hairline, popular in Black and Latino culture. Given her studies in graphic design, she had no issue with the visuals, but needed writing. For this, she contacted her close friends and schoolmates at the affiliated Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts, Brandon Owens and Justin Allen. Brandon wrote two haiku on the topic, and Justin, a piece of prose poetry. Before the end of the summer the zine was finished, copies printed. By fall, it had been included into traveling zine archive the POCZine Project.
Soon their zine, simply titled Baby Hair, would be traveling the country with the works of numerous other people of color that decided to bypass the publishing industry in favor of complete artistic freedom. But not before they were offered a gig by aspiring curator Johnny Sagan.
Early meetings with Sagan, under the curatorial name Snowy Wilderness, left both Grant and Allen in bewilderment. Tasks were listed off at a rapid pace and seemed both promising and abstract. The gig: Sagan, curating a series of art shows in collaboration with Brooklyn-based gallery Superchief at Lower East Side bar and gallery space Culturefix, had gotten a hold of a copy of Baby Hair and wanted Grant and Allen to produce in house zines to accompany the gallery shows. Their first project, a zine for House of Ladosha’s show THE WHOLE HOUSE EATS.
This reading by House of Ladosha member Juliana Huxtable was recorded at the Fag City reading event at Envoy Enterprises on October 10th 2012, and I’m happy it is online in full-length now. A text version of “Unfriendly Black Hottie (Queen Read 1+2)”, a powerful and hilarious take on everyday-transphobia and -racism (starts around 4:40), can be found on Neon Ladosha’s blog. For the second part of the reading please visit Juliana’s Vimeo page.
When the media hype around new queer hip hop artists reached its peak last year, many journalists and bloggers highlighted House of Ladosha in line with artists such as LE1F and Mykki Blanco, assuming that the name stands solely for a music act. But it would be a mistake to reduce the New York based collective to its music, even if the music created and performed by Ladosha members Dosha Devastation and Cunty Crawford Ladosha is the most visible part of the collective.
Nevertheless, “Ladosha” stands for a group of individual artists and performers, who in their own way continue the concept of the “house” as it emerged from the Ballroom community as a way of opposing traditional ideas of family and “the home”. The concept of “house” is meant in a more abstract way. It is about a state of mind, about friendship and shared interests such as music, art and fashion, with house members who all question and transform stereotypical ideas of race, sexuality and gender in their own creative ways.
New Yorkers now have the possibility to explore the Ladosha world through an exhibition at Superchief gallery, which will open on Thursday. “The Whole House Eats” curated by artist and Ladosha member Christopher Udemezue aka Neon Christina Ladosha will feature artwork, video and photography by the members of the Ladosha family, as well as a live performance by Dosha Devastation and Cunty Crawford Ladosha, who will perform at the opening. If you want to know what awaits you can check out the video below or the exhibition tumblr, as well as the Ladosha soundcloud page, where they just recently posted a new track entitled “9 or 11″. For a more theoretical introduction to the exhibition and the galleries opening hours check out the Superchief website.
“The Whole House Eats”, February 7th to 14th at Superchief Gallery at Culturfix, 9 Clinton Street, New York.
LE1F has released his new single “Coins” via Soundcloud today. The track (originally produced for the Norwegian hip hop act A-laget by Norwegian producers Drippin & Souldrop last year) will be on his
upcoming mixtape “Fly Zone” which will be out next Monday (download here):
Cakes the Killa is about to release his new mixtape (album?) “The Eulogy” via Mishka Records on Tuesday. The first single is called “Goodie” and is the ideal continuation of his debut tape “Easy Bake Oven” from 2011:
The members of House of Ladosha will be featured in a group exhibition entitled “The Whole House Eats” at Superchief Gallery, NYC, which opens on February 7th and will for run week. Will will provide more information soon. Meanwhile, here’s the latest Ladosha track ”9 OR 11″:
The following performance video by New York based artist Christopher Udemezue (aka Neon Ladosha) was shot in June, where he performed in conjunction with this year’s Queerin’ Queens pride event at the Queens Museum of Art, hosted by the queer film series CIMEROSA. The live piece was based on an installation video by the artist, which consists of elements of the “It Gets Better” video by Jamey Rodemeyer (a 14 year old, who took his life at the age of 14 after being bullied), and a horrible lynching video which went viral under the title “They did this to him because he was gay!” (- it shows how a man gets set on fire by a mob, supposedly in Nigeria). During the performance, the video is partially projected on the artist, who is at first dressing up and putting on make up, while carefully examining him/her-self and the audience in front of a mirror. In the second part of the performance he/she pulls the viewer’s attention further away from the projection, moving dance to a distorted version of the reggae classic “Bam Bam” by Sister Nancy. But watch yourself.
The gang’s all QUEER (2009-2012)
Oakland based designer and artist Mekhi Baldwin has started The GAQ in May 2009 after unsuccessfully searching for a blog that caters to the work of queer artists of color. Over three years, the tumblr has become one of the most important sources for queer art and culture beyond the mainstream and has contributed to a new self-awareness in the community. A few weeks ago Mekhi has decided to stop working on The GAQ, so the site is no longer updated, but can still be visited as an online archive.
Amazing art tumblr by artist Julio Torres Salcedo, a self-described “27 y/o fatqueermexican”, who combines pictures of his own work (I especially like his shirts with drawings of new and old queer idols and role-models) with critical reflections on race, queer culture and the body + the work of other exciting artists. You can also find him on Twitter.
BLUE LIP BLACK WITCH-CUNT
Tumblr by artist and House of Ladosha member Juliana Huxtable, who you may know from her guest appearance in Le1f’s new “Soda” video or as a model for Bcalla or for photographer Amos Mac (see picture, with pink pics).
Like her awesome Neon Ladosha blogspot site the tumblr focuses on fashion, arts and queer pop + neo-goth culture with a heavy bent on the work of queer artists of color. (UPDATE: The Neon Ladosha blog is NOT run by Juliana Huxtable Ladosha, but by, yes, Neon Ladosha. See comment below. Sorry for the misinformation!)
1-800 Friends/Thugs Mansion
“Welome to my little corner of misandry”: Fragments of contemporary queer culture + trans* culture + QPoC culture + pop culture by Oakland based accessorizer/artist Terry X, designer of the “Butch Please” cap.
The BANG Gang
Awesome all-gender hipster fashion tumblr with a focus on metallic fabrics, crazy prints, transgressive outlines and dramatic gold/silver jewelry.
FEMINIST DYKE WHORE
Colorful photo collection at the intersection of feminism, fashion and (black/queer) pop culture.
Queering The Game Of Life
“I’m a fat brown cis male queer who posts about stuff relevant to that, as well as other things that interest me, things I think are pretty, music, other forms of popular culture, and the occasional personal post with little to no consistency. I also run the body positive blogs fuckyeahchubbyguysofcolor and fatnudes, if you’re into that sort of thing.” Nothing to add.
Tumlbr by photographer Tomoaki Hata, who’s photobook “The night is still young” about the Osaka gay/drag scene we featured earlier this year. Campy view on past and contemporary Western and Asian pop culture.
Exciting source for avantgardist fashion, design and art.
~ (Martyr Men)
Art, fashion, guys and porn posted by Kwame, a 22 independent pornographer. The site also features his own indie porn productions (= stylish wanking videos guys & re-edited porn). Via Okan.
Over the past few years Brooklyn based photographer, publisher and writer Amos Mac (picture by Elisa Shea) has been doing an amazing job in documenting and pushing forward queer and trans* culture in the US and worldwide. I’ve already posted about Amos’ work as the founder and editor of the wonderful trans guys magazine Original Plumbing and his new Translady Fanzine, this time I want to focus on his colorful and powerful portraits of queer, trans* and gender non-conforming artists, performers and musicians, such as OPM co-founder Rocco Katrastrophe, Cody Critcheloe aka Ssion, the House of Ladosha Crew, Hunx or Black Cracker.
The pictures shown here are only a collection of personal favorites taken from the photographer’s website and his tumblr, where you find many more facets of his work. The one on top of the gallery, a portrait of Cunty Crawford Ladosha, was just recently shown at the exhibition Testimony: A Living Exhibition Of Queer Youth at the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art in New York. Amos’ latest project is a video campaign entitled “Talk About It”, which seeks to adress adult suicide in the queer community and strengthen the trans community from within.