Over the weekend, I had the pleasure of attending So Very Alive: Performing Feminist and Queer Utopias, Futures and Dreams at Rumble Arts Center in Humboldt Park. Curated by performance artist and pink-haired maven Amanda Stefanski, nine radical Chicago-based acts addressed the possibilities for transformation, the beauty of resilience and survival, and illuminated the glimmers of liberation that exist in the world.
I volunteered to run the bar for the night, snapping photos in between beer runs, all the while dressed in this intoxicating little number:
- Old Navy black blazer jacket, size 4x, $5 via the Gap Clearance Store in Hebron, Ky.
- It’s Raining Rhinestones gold disco bra, Torrid 44 D, made by me and available for sale at Plump Pinup Couturier & Vintage Resale (Pssst! Use the code GRANDOPENING to take 10 percent off your purchase.)
- ASOS Curve pencil skirt with gold sequin panel, size US 22, $35.61 USD
- Hips and Curves black lace garter belt, size 3x, $14.99
- Torrid black lace stockings, size 4x, $4.98
- EyeBuyDirect.com Rock! Peggy cat eye glasses in black, $55
- Forever 21 gold and pearl necklace, $12.90
- Sears gold lame pointy toe flats, size 11, $5
Between body heat and slinging drinks, Rumble Arts Center was warm and toasty, so I ended up jettisoning my stockings and blazer.
My top is a black vintage-style longline bra from Torrid that I embellished with gold mirrors pried off a disco ball and a cascade of crystals in gold, gray, champagne and clear. Many people thought my separates were actually a dress, and now that I see the photos, I kinda wish it was. If had a gold sequin half circle skirt to attach to a bodice like that, I’d be in full-on drag queen glamour heaven. (Note to self: Source the gold sequin fabric, and make that skirt.)
And while my outfit was great, the performances were even better. Queer centaurs playfully courted one another. A cyborg woman simulated surgery on herself with a live biofeedback noise composition. A glittery goddess protected their communities through dance. And there was so much body paint. Really, the entire lineup was a dream, featuring performances from:
- Amber Marsh with Kate Puckett and Lolly Extract
- Amina Ross and Allison Shyer
- Caitlin Baucom
- Cynthia Medrano
- Erica Gressman
- Vajaqueque Brown
- Kan Seidel and Precious Davis
- Rae Langes
- Sage Morgan Hubbard
Some of my favorite shots from the night are below, and the full set is on the Plump Pinup Life & Style Facebook page.
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