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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

O GIRL YOU BE ONE TOUGH KERSHMERGA!




So sorry I have been neglecting my blogina writing duties but touring North America with stops in Toronto and Kingston, Ontario Canada have left me physically drained.  Very exciting being brought to Kingston,  I’ve been to Montreal, Vancouver, and the big T many times but Kingston is a first for the Vagimule and I must say I just adore  the oldest Canuckian city.  The beautiful Robin Alex McDonald of the young curatorial collective Turbines fetched me from the airport and delivered la diva to the historic Hotel Belvedere which is a sumptuous shabby chic Victorian mansion with a very friendly accommodating staff. My lush hotel room was just beyond magnificent taking me into a comfort zone that I have never experienced before.  I was fortunate that the weather was bright, sunny and crisp.  Kingston is a University town so everywhere the eye could roam was humpy boy eye candy jogging about in tight shorts showing off rugby style thick thighs, rump and calf----yowza!
The Turbine Curatorial Collective consists of a charming clique of youthful scholars that along with Miss Kelly include delicious Maria Montez doppleganger Pansee Atta, lovesexy Gabriel Cheung, pert Anne Dunsford and translucent skinned lovely Katharine Vingoe-Cram. I predict that you’ll be hearing a lot about the Turbine Collective in the future and I felt so lucky that I was was apart of their Utopias Performance Art Congress which was co-sponsored by the Department of Art, Gender and Cultural Studies at Queen’s University, The City of Kingston Art Council, The George Taylor Richardson Memorial Fund and Modern Fuel Artist –Run Center.
Being that I am so fragile when it comes to aeroplane travel and not wanting to drain my strength I missed the Mercury queer dance party, panel discussions, lectures and electric performances by emerging live artists Andrew Rabyniuk, Avery Everhart and Hazel Meyer the Girl Jock.  I presented my artist talk to a packed intergenerational audience at the gorgeous Agnes Etherington Art Centre Atrium and on another day did my “Twee & Sympathy- Lesbian seperatist high tea performance for one person at a time at the fab Renaissance Event Hall which is a renovated church  that was built in the Regency England period and is expertly managed by the hot famed showtune queen Denis LeBlanc.
Providing our Ms. Davis with personal assistance during her stay was macho Italian power top Dan Vena the best dressed man in Ontario.  Mr. Vena along with some wonderful student volunteers provided the lady with the most sumptuous meals, toiletries and gift bags anticipating her every desire.  Major kudos and thankx also to Jan Allen and Barry Fagan of the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Miss Ann Marie Claire a personable and highly spirited  no nonsense vixen, bubble butt booty pie Justin the blumenlove sex god medical student and husband of Gabriel Cheung.  There are just so many wonderful people to thank for my visit to Kingston and the Turbine Curatorial Collective know just how to spoil international black lady artistes.  Veteran curators could learn a thing or two from them in how to properly treat visitors and about pure utter graciousness.  Are you listening MoMa PS-1?
The Turbines Curatorial Collective even paid for me a relaxing full-body massage at the Annex Therapy Spa and Treatment Center from the muscular Portuguese masseuse Angel who expertly banished all my anxiety and stress so that I could just fully concentrate on giving the best possible performance.
I also reconnected with some olde Canadian zine pals from the 1980s like  the wonderous Mr.Tim Murphy who I met years ago through G.B.Jones &Carolyn Azar of Fifth Column and Don Pyle of Shadowy Men, Shadowy Planet and Phonocomb. I also got to flirt at my performance with the beefy bald headed pud of a British director Yann DeMange of the feature film 1971.
In my hotel room I OD’s on silly reality TV shows like one from A&E that was really ill called Marriage At First Sight that featured a muscle headed EMT and of course being in an English language country  I was able to enjoy  marathon sessions of tough love guru Judge Judy who I can’t get enough of. Living now for almost a decade in Berlin I really miss counter culture so being taken to several 1950s style diners was a true blessing.  One place  called Tommy’s we were served by a perfect curly haired pillow lipped skater thrash boy with warm bright blue eyes and joyous manner about him.  What can I say but Ah Canada!
Because of my tour to Canadia Rising Stars, Falling Stars-We Must Have Music was held on the first Sunday of the month instead of its usual last Sunday.  Fortunately that didn’t stop the multitudes from showing up including some A-list American scholars in the form of the legendary David “GayShame” Halperin who is in Berlin doing research at the Wissenschaft Villa in Wilmerdorf  with radiant youth musicologist suprema Roger Mathew Grant who is collaborating with Fearless Leader of CHEAP Kollectiv Susanne Sachsse and I on The Magic Flute.  Also at RSFS: goodlooking musician Fabrizio Moretti,  journalist and novelist Murat Ham, with Iranian British hacktor Kayvan Novak, young fit Italian male ingénue Lorenzo Richelmy who played Marco Polo in a recent TV mini series,  hottie Ryan Guzman, and Jack Nicholson’s  23 year old son with Rebecca Broussard  Ray Nicholson hanging with the Gersch Twins Salome and Richard. La Susanne Sachsse with her film historian lover Marcuse Siegelstein, who will join Arsenal Empress Stefanie Schulte Strathaus on an experimental film tour of India for an entire month sponsored by the Goethre Institute.  I screened the 2007 Tamil Indian film Paruthi Veeran directed by Ameer Sultan starring the chunky but funky little sex machine Karthik Sivakumar.  This movie is quite atmospheric and even features a trans singing dancing crew who are part of two big production numbers one featuring the male lead in a dance off that is highly spirited.  The violent flourishes in the film are a bit unsettling but give the movie its salty dog edge.  My partner in grime Daniel Hendrickson the Scandinavian Muzlim was in the hospital and wasn’t at my side at RSFS this month with his intoxicating piano playing skills so I felt my introduction suffered quite a bit and overall I was lacking in energy with having to coordinate several upcoming visual art exhibitions and performances in North America, Scandinavia and The Netherlands

Saturday, February 28, 2015

TRAU KEINEM, DEM DU NICHT TRAUST




Was taken to dinner for my birthday to a cute little Austrian boite off the Ku-Damn by the young and very handsome Justin Patterson who is a relative to the very famous wealthy and powerful Mellon Family Dynasty of America.  Despite popular belief I do not have a complete disdain for all rich people, just the icky ones.  In my dealings over the years with the Mellon clan they are true blue.  How does a black drag queen from the ghettos of Los Angeles get mixed up with the mega rich you ask.  Well its a bit of a long story but it all started back in the 1970s when I received a scholarship to attend the prep school Choate Rosemary in Wallingford Connecticut.  Through this scholarship I got to meet the late Paul Mellon and his wife Bunny Mellon who died last year at the age of 103.  Mrs. Mellon loved black people and my insane eccentricities caught her eye many years ago and its through her that I met the sincere charmer that is Justin Patterson. 
Back in the 1990s I had a flirty relationship with the late John-John Kennedy before he was married.  He was somewhat of a dinge queen, and Bunny Mellon was best friends with his mother Jackie O.  Anyway at dinner Justin and I got talking about falling out with friends, a subject I could build a mansion upon and I told him that any relationship in which one party feels even the slightest sense of diminishment from the other for me that relationship is not worth enduring.  I also never regret my decisions to pull away from people with an ultimately corrosive aura.  Those faithful readers of my blogina will know just who I am talking about as well as the person in questions who reads this blog regularly.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

SAUGEIL




Fearless Leader Susanne Sachsse and I had a wonderous Skype conference call with our Magic Flute crack team of Jackie Shemish lighting designer from London, Jonathan Berger & Kate Beach handling production design in New York.  There is still so much to do with this project before it premieres in the Fall 2015 during the Performa Biennale. So excited working with indie pop god Jamie Stewart, Roger Mathew Grant the Musicalogist and all the others who will bring this event to fruition.
Susi and Marcuse Siegelstein took me to a delicious birthday fische dinner at the Portuguese restaurant that is on their East Berlin street.  Yes I turned 369 on Feb 20th which makes me a very old chrystaline entity.  Thank you one and all  for the lovely cards, emugs, texts and juicy presents including the endowment of a very frisky young American born male ingénue . . .
I haven’t watched the telecast of the Oscar ceremony since the late 1970s with my family.  It was boring then and I gather its even duller now, but I was made aware by friends that my old pal Patricia Arquette of the Arquette acting dynasty won an award for best supporting actress for her role in the film Boyhood.  The movie was shown at the Berlinale International Film Festival last year, but I didn’t get a chance to see it but was able to hang out with Patty and she stopped by the Forum Party at the Volksbuhne where I was DJaning last year.  She had heard that I moved to Berlin but didn’t know I had been living here for almost a decade.  Well now the lady is an Oscar winning actress and it couldn’t have happened to a nicer gal.  Also Julianne Moore won for best actress and I met her years ago through director Todd Haynes.  Julianne won for a film called Still Alice that I haven’t seen,  directed by the gay couple Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland.  It was sad to find out that  Richard Glatzer is suffering from a debilitating illness, but I’m glad that his husband Wash has stuck by him and they are continuing to direct films together.  They are both very ambitious so helming an Academy Award winning film I am sure has brought them much happiness and comfort.
On my way to a formal dinner party at the Kreuzburg compound of Nanna Heidenreich of Forum Expanded I was transferring to the U7 UBahn line at Yorkstrasse and saw a meltdown by this Black American busker who usually is parked on this platform hallway singing very badly tedious pop tunes and playing his keyboard in an equally horrid manner.  On this occasion he flipped out because no one was tipping him and threatened everyone walking by that he would kill them.  That’s the downside of living in Berlin, so many performers from the States come here thinking that because there is less competition that they will become huge stars here.  I call it the Gayle Tufts complex.  Not every mediocre American performer can become a success abroad like the talentless Ms. Tufts who I am told is quite popular on German television for her Dinglish routine and also performing in the bland upscale cabaret scene in Berlin.
Frau Heidenreich’s fabulous supper was filled with lots of young perky Berlin youth and with a menu that included chestnut galettes with radicchio & dried apricots and scamorza, a grapefruit avocado salad, a salad from roasted cauliflower with hazelnuts and pomegranate a bouillabaisse with a Tunesian twist, a chestnut fennel celery soup, a mushroom bourguignong stew, roasted chicken with fennel, clementine and pernod and for desert a pavlova homemade baklava, candied orange peel dipped in dark chocolate pate’ de fruit from blood oranges.  The celebutants at the soiree:  Salome Gershe, Nora Melitor, the Forum Expanded Set-up team:  DJane Olga Damnitz aka Angela Anderson, Noam, Seamus, Richard, Laura, Dafne, Mark, Thais, Evan, Mascha who was on the Teddy Jury this year, Katrin, Adam who helped with the final crazy stages of cooking along with Anouschka.
Ran into the stunning young Berlin born and raised artist Kerstin Honeit and her partner at Nollendorky Platz.  Ms. Honeit looks like a young version of the famous lesbian writer Mary McCarthy and is featured  in a group Exhibition at N.B.K. Gallery called History is a Warm Gun that opens Friday Feb 27th at 7pm at Chausseestrasse 128/129 that also features the sexy Pola Sieverding.  If you are in town looking for some fun Berlin flavoured event this is the place to be.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

SPRITZIGE VERSUCHUNGEN



During the Berlinale after a Forum screening at the Delphi Kino I stopped by the California Burito joint Dolores at Wittenbergplatz for some soup and got into a conversation with a sweet young Black American opera diva named Monica from Ohio who has lived here for over ten years in a suburb near Spandau and her nutty blondine friend from Texas via Shanghai who has only been a Berlin resident for six months.  Monica saw my accreditation badge from a distance and at first mistook me for the gay black B-movie director Tyler Perry of the Madea franchise.  Now ain’t that a hoot?
From my German trolley Dolley pal I just got this hot bit of gossip that Deutsch super model Heidi Klum was recently removed from a Luthansa flight because of her ADD bratty mulatto brood.  Ms. Klum always travels first class but sticks the nanny and the kids in business class.  Well the kids were out-of-control Regis Philbin style and the nanny couldn’t get a handle on them so the flight attendants naturally came to the mother to intervene and she calmly  uttered it wasn’t her problem to solve so she and her entire entourage were unceremoniously left on the tarmac.
Sad to report the recent deaths of 1960s Lesbian pop songbird Leslie”You Don’t Own Me” Gore at age 68 and Galic charmer Louis Jourdain of Gigi and Letter From an Unknown Woman fame age 93. Stars always die in three’s so who will be next? I wanted to see Jourdain and Jean Peters in the movie Anne of the Indies which was screened as part of the Technicolor Restrospektiv at the Berlinale, but because of my tired gout condition I wound up missing many films this year and restricting most of my Berlinale activities to the Akadamie der Kunste screenings and Think Film Congress lectures.  I saw nothing from the Competition section so I missed films by Werner Herzog, Terrence Malick, Margarethe von Trotta and Peter Greenaway.  The Herzog flick I heard was a big dud, but I did want to see the new Greenaway and Guy Maddin films which got rave reviews from those whose opinions I trust.
Uli Ziemons of Forum Expanded just sent me a list of the people who were at the Forum Party that I didn’t mention in my earlier post:

Felipe Braganca (director of Escape from my Eyes), Leila Albayaty with co-writer (forgot the name), Islam Mohammed, Michel Balague (producer of Leilas and Islam's films), Jean-Pierre Bekolo, Black President-director Mpumelelo Mcata with producer Anna Teeman, Mostafa Youssef (producer of Egyptian film Out on the Street), prolific experimental filmmaker Kevin Jerome Everson.
Brazilian director Helvecio Marins Jr., Austrian director with film in Berlinale Shorts Sebastian Brameshuber, Forum selection committee member Ansgar Vogt, artist Simon Fujiwara, Stephan Geene and Marietta Kesting of b_books, and Berlin film director Henrieke Meyer, Toby Ashraf, Mark Pennock, curator extraordinaire Anja Lueckenkemper, art dealer Jose Garcia Torres, Chinese director Jian Wen, Haitian director Raoul Peck with his stars August Diehl who plays young Karl Marx and Alexander Eehling who will play Friedrich Engels.

Had a delightful time at the Cheese Endique Trifecta studio with young Israeli artist Liad who I will be mentoring while she is working on her graduate program at UdK.  Also spent some quality time with my former Weissensee Akademy student the French tyro artiste Christophe de Rohan Chabot who accompanied me to one of Manuel Schubert’s infamous  Laundry Parties held at the brand new renovated wash haus on the Haupstrasse. Monsieur de Rohan Chabot is curating an exhibition that opens Feb 27th 7pm at the Auto Center  Gallery Leipziger Strasse 56 10117 Berlin that features the work of Pizza Suicide Club, Joep van Liefland, Maik Schierloh, Mark Stroemich and Alexander Lieck.
*
Received this announcement from one of my very dear LA collaborators the amazing young artist Marcus Pontello who worked with me on my project at MoCa in 2011 called Dejecta.  He is trying to raise funds for a new film he is working on that he needs financial assistance with.  The project sounds incredible so please contribute and pass the word on to others.  As you know I don't usually support crowd funding unless its something that i really believe in from people i believe in.  Here is  Marcus' sincere plea:
 
I want to share with you a documentary film I've been directing for two years now called Friday I'm In Love.  It's about the legendary Numbers Nightclub in Houston Texas that has a pretty amazing history.  It started as a gay disco in the late 70s, and became an alternative dance club/music venue in the 80s becoming home to goths, punks, queers, drag queens, and misfits alike.  Almost every obscure and alternative band of the 80s and 90s performed at Numbers.  It's a really special place and Houston is really lucky to have it.

We just launched our Kickstarter campaign- which will be our first attempt at an actual budget.  Maybe you'd be interested in putting it on your blog or sharing it with friends.  We need all the help we can get!


xox
Marcus

Saturday, February 14, 2015

ECHTE KERLE




Before entering a screening of the Documentary about Nina Simone called What Happened Miss Simone? I got into a conversation with a man from the American South named Ral Grummond who told me that the famous writer of To Kill a Mockingbird Harper Lee munched on his bunghole when he was around 15 years of age.  The thought of Ms. Lee who is quite elderly now and in assistance living sticking her tongue down this man’s “tasty sweet trench” as he claims she called his anal cavity just didn’t seem to make any sense to me.

I believe Harper Lee to be a lesbian,and I’ve never read anything about the author ever having relations with men other then her childhood best friend the late great Truman Capote.  According to Mr. Grummond who is gay and from a small hamlet near Ms. Lee’s  hometown the celebrated writer was a power rim top, and that she ate out his garden salad better then anyone.  Wouldn’t it be a marvelous hoot if the new Lee tome Go Set a Watchman which everyone is eagerly awaiting was all about frothy analingus?

Getting back to Nina Simone, the Liz Garbus directed docu is very talking heads but one thing that was wonderful is the numerous amount of footage of Ms. Simone that I’ve never seen before including a b&w segment of Hugh Hefner’s early 1960s TVshow Playboy AfterDark. The daughter of Nina Simone-Lisa Simone Kelly was at the after screening Q&A.  Ms. Kelly is quite lively of personality though she seems a bit new agey, and if there isn’t anything worse then German new ageyness its black new ageyness.  I’ve had many experiences seeing Nina Simone in concert and she was thrilling, and I also witnessed her volatility in action and it could be equally reviting.
Was reunited with my old pal Laura Nix who along with Lia Gangitano of Participant Inc. Gallery in New York City brought me to the ICA in Boston back in 1990 when she and Lia were both curators there.  Haven’t see Laura in several years and now she is the co-director along with Andy Bichlbaum and Mike Bonanno of the fab new Yes Men film Yes Men Are Revolting.  The last Yes Men film was at the Berlinale in 2009 and was quite an audience favourite.  This film gives more background on the activist pranksters who are shown  going through emotional crisis.  I had always thought that both of the Yes Men were gay and in a relationship with each other, but one is actually married with children.  Hmmmm. . .  Wished I could have hung out more with Laura but she was busy on her promotional circuit and not only have I had Berlinale duties during the festival with Forum Expanded but I am also preparing several upcoming visual art exhibitions on two continents. 
Heard this gossip from the annual Forum Party where I was DJaning along with Forum Expanded artist Wendelien van Oldenborgh that the Yes Men who were with the wonderful Diana McCarty of Reboot FM Radio/Freies Kunstler Radio aus Berlin UKW 88.4 weren’t let into the gala even though Nanna Heidenreich of Forum Expanded tried to tell the guards at the door they were award winning filmmakers.  What a shame as they are fun party people who know how to get down and boogie with the best of them.  Of course  international actress Audrey Tatou and her bodyguards were on hand fascinated by the scene.  Also making a pitstop to the Gruner Salon at the Vbuhne:  Ayoub Elasri, Jack Huston star of the film Posthumous,Jeffrey Hollander the patrician entrepreneur,Sven Schelker Swiss male ingénue, Anthony Meindl, Alex Ross Perry director of Forum’s Queen of Earth, Nicholas Galitzine, Saraj Sharma, Tony Revolori, Anton Fuqua, Peter Stormare, Will Poulter the young Brit actor whose eyebrows are overly plucked, James Frecheville, Koen Claerhout and posse, Antonia Baehr and galpal, juicy Pauline Beaudry and her hot handsome ladyfriend, Ruth Schoeneger and her actress life partner and a bunch of the wildest most attractive baby dykes on the planet, Karim Anouz Think Film Jury, Thomas Mann of the film Me and Earl, George Strompolous of Fullscreen Films with concubine Tye Sheridan, Joel Kinnaman, Jan & Mark Duplans, Mike Luciano, Phil Matarese, Justin Kelly and blow job buddy Charlie Carver, Anton Corbijn, Dane DeHaan and Ariel Vromen, Emory Cohen, Tunde Adebimpe of the band TV on the Radio, Jack Reynor, Taron Egerton,hunky actor Max Irons, Jan Künemund and Cristina Nord (from the Taz)  Enrico Ippolito (also Taz) Layla Albayate, Michel Belague, Marcin Malaszczak,  Dorothee Wenner & Mickey, Richard &,Salome Gersche, Darryl Els, party animal Lauren Howes, charming film scholar and curator Barbara Wurm, Claus Löser, Empress Stefanie Schulte Strathaus and her famous meat magazine father,  Babeth Vanloo filmmaker who was friends with George Kuchar and Jack Smith  performing with Smith in Köln in the 70s and she did a great film with Kuchar playing Andy Warhol.  This year was the first year that senior projectionist of Kino Arsenal Oushi wasn’t at the Berlinale and its never really the Berlinale without her so it was such a treat to see her at the Forum Party looking relaxed enjoying her well earned retirement.
Have to mention that the Think Film Congress 3. Visionary Archive day was very inspiring mainly because of a way too short presentation by South African filmmaker, curator, critic and tri-athelete Darryl Els who brilliantly gave an overview of the South African B-Scheme films from the 1970s to the late 1980s.  Mr. Els has a way about him that is so charming and  really draws you in.  No one handles discourse quite like Darryl Els.  After learning about South Africa reconstruction times and its Black comics era I want to now change my name from Vaginal Davis to Lucky Boy or Spear Meets Bomber.  
Visionary Archive is in its second year and has been linking film research in Berlin, Bissau, Johannesburg, Cairo and Khartoum.  Also enjoyed the presentation of Studio Gad works of Sudanese filmmaker Gadalla Gubara and Yasmin Desouki of Egypt’s piece on Revisiting Memory.