If anytime this week you walk by the former Tower Records on Market Street, you’ll see a space transformed from bland-nothing to Queer hippy fabulousness, courtesy of the SF Radical Faeries.
Despite rumors to the contrary Faetopia, the annual Pop Up Community Space in the Castro, has returned thanks in no small part to the helpful intervention by Dist 8 Supervisor, Scott Wiener, who smooted the property building manager’s ruffled feathers earlier this week when the whole event was under threat of having its plug pulled and cancelled for 2013 Pride. The event kicks off tonight at the start of Summer Solstice. Opening reception tickets can be purchased here.
Castro Biscuit sat down on a sunny Castro porch with Kyle DeVries of the Feyboy Collective to learn all about this years event.
Kyle is the winner of this year’s annual Hunky Jesus contest (run by the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence), and it’s easy to see why. It’s not just good-looks; Kyle has the openness and an infectious smile of an idealist. His is also the most visible face behind Faetopia.
Castro Biscuit: Define Faetopia.
Kyle DeVries: Faetopia is a pop-up Queer arts and community center aimed at creating a world where Queers are celebrated for our unique gifts. We want to invite everybody of any identity to come and see what we’re creating. We think that there are unique wisdom and perspectives that should be shared.
CB: What happened on Wednesday?
KD: There was miscommunication between the property manager and the building owner, which led to a state of panic. We had to take everything down. [They had been setting up for almost a week already.] Then Supervisor Wiener was able to step in and calm down the situation. We had everything up again by the end of the night. It’s amazing how community can be united in adversity.
CB: There are over 80 events. Give me some highlights?
KD: I’m really excited about the Faetopia Opening Reception (6/21 6 PM-10 PM). We have singer-songwriters from three decades; we have Blackberri coming in, Distance, KC Collins and Justin Morrison. We have some floating performances around the space and other surprises! Also the Wednesday 2Werk Fashion Show is going to be spectacular. Last year it took me by surprise how beautiful the fashion was, how energized the crowd was.
Kyle DeVries winning 2013′s Hunky Jesus award at DNA Lounge.
CB: In the past I’ve noticed events around Queer history.
KD: We have Greg Youmans doing Queer Are We Going, Queer Have We Been (6/26 11am). We also doing the Queer Oral History Project, Scratch and Jed will be doing interviews around the space from 1 PM-4 PM throughout the week with a presentation, I forget what time, check the schedule at faetopia.com! (Laughs.) [It’s 6/23 4 PM –Ed.]
CB: I often hear comments that SF doesn’t have the Queer alternatives that it used to have. Would you agree?
KD: The (AIDS) epidemic did a huge amount of damage to our community, especially culturally. Gentrification of the City is hurting us in a similar way. I know talented people who came to SF to try to make it here but were unable to find housing. In fact we’re having a drag show called Gendrification: Gender Fuck Freaks Fuck Gentrification Back (6/24 at 8 PM). The pressures of capitalism and rising rents in this city are like this looming cloud; none of us know how we’re going to deal with it in the next five years.
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