Queer Biennial Celebrates Both ‘Cerebral’ and ‘Carnal’ LGBTQ Art

LOS ANGELES—Southern California will be visited by a host of creative types in June when the Queer Biennial comes to town. The month-long event is an international survey focusing on the current movements in LGBTQ art. According to the show’s curators, “Artists do not shy away from sexuality, identity, the body, and all around queerness.”

Running June 1-30 in Los Angeles, the third installment of the Queer Biennial is called “What if Utopia” and examines the ideas of a Queer Utopia. The theme explores “the cerebral, the carnal, the fantastical, and the optical.”

More than 100 established, mid-career and emerging artists will be showcased, from legends like Andy Warhol, Keith Haring and Tom of Finland to emerging artists who have something to say about the current political and sexual landscape. The always witty John Waters will speak at 8 p.m. on Friday, June 1 at the opening reception, which is free and open to the public. A pre-opening party at 6:30 p.m. is $75 and includes a signed copy of his new book. The reception takes place at NAVEL, located at 1611 S Hope St, Los Angeles, CA 90015.

Performances throughout the evening will include those from Alice Cunt and Sailorfag, whose “art names” would make fantastic porn names.

The show has something for everyone, from conceptual ideas on ethnicity and queer culture from founder Ruben Esparza, to beautiful female-themed photos from Yelena Moskovitz.

Artist Charles Rosenberg says of his creations, “I make work that uses the visual language of minimalism and applies it to erotic content. The collaged images of the hands are phallic but they form a vulvic or anal space and it’s unclear whether the fingers are entering the hole or coming out from it. Minimalist reductivism allows multiple readings of what is going on (less allows the viewer’s imagination to say more), and I like that polysexual ambiguity.”

For more information, visit QueerBiennial.org. A full schedule of events can be seen here.

Purchase tickets here.

Below, artwork by Ruben Esparza (top) and Charles Rosenberg (bottom).