Selections from 'Queer': Wu Tsang / David J. Getsy / Renate Lorenz

Selected by Erik Patton ('15) and Haley Bueschlen ('15)




 How does Wu Tsang set the stage, what is the “before” of a performance, and how is it shared? In order to fall apart as human beings, we need first to be able to live, can serve as a qualifier for an anti-assimilation politic, and a means of positioning our in(queery). We are interested in exploring different performed notions of self, and specifically a theoretical artist in drag rather than drag artist and drag queen. We ask, how is drag a departure, arrival, and gesture that peels back a layer and exposes oneself in a particular way? And what is the nuance behind getting paid as Wu Tsang’s describes? What are the different potentialities  or complicities of liveness and documentation becoming “... ‘entertainment’  jesters for elite patronage of museums?” How can we open a complex dialogue about spectatorship, institution, performer, and race, within the art context of drag?

Renate Lorenz’s Drag - Radical, Transtemporal, Abstract how can we discuss the making of infinitude in drag-- the process of making fluid assemblages and connectivities which interrupt or are beyond heteronormativity. And what happens when drag is captured in the stasis of an image?  We ask all these questions when diving into something incredibly robust, strange, and defiant as a queer politic.


In order to provide a scaffolding for discussions that are open, challenging and imbued with care, we have made a list of brief items to consider when participating in the reading group below.

  • This is a non-judgemental space that everyone is a part of.
  • All voices are welcome and no singular narrative should dominate the conversation. It is important that all members feel able to participate in the discussion, be it to share an interpretation, experience, interrogation or ask for clarification. To that end, please be mindful of those who haven't had a chance to contribute yet, as well as the time you're taking.
  • Expanding notions of space: we are a collective and it is a voice of everyone. In an effort to open up the conversation, we’ll also have notecards available for questions and comments (feel free to remain anonymous) that we’ll return to throughout the discussion.
  • Use “I” instead of “You”. Speak from your personal experience and identity representing yourself, your opinions, desires, feelings, and not other people