Stories about: arts

Ah, beauty norms, my least favourite oxymoron. There is nothing ‘normal’ about heteronormative beauty. What we’re told are ‘beautiful’ characteristics usually represent the outliers of the diverse toolbox of human features. And this thing – ‘beauty norms’ – seems to predominantly hang itself off those of us who identify as femme. It drapes itself over …

In the past, transgender dancers couldn’t compete in Irish dancing competitions in Australia. I changed that in 2018. In December of 2017, after years of hiding my true self and feeling an overwhelming sense of disconnection from my outward presentation, I decided to undergo a gender transition. I formally began my gender transition in February …

Jehnny Beth, the charismatic lead singer and co-writer of UK band Savages, recently launched her first album as a solo artist: To Love is To Live. In addition to the album, Jehnny Beth will also be releasing Crimes Against Love Memories (C.A.L.M.), her first book, featuring a collection of erotic short stories along with photography …

Archer asks: SJ Norman

SJ (Sarah-Jane) Norman (b. 1984) is a cross-disciplinary artist and writer. Their career has so far spanned 15 years and has embraced a diversity of disciplines and formal outcomes, including solo and ensemble performance, installation, sculpture, text, video and sound. They are a non-binary transmasculine person and a diasporic Koori, born on Gadigal land.  I’ll …

Archer asks: Diimpa

Musician and artist Diimpa chats to Rose Chalks about endurance, enlightenment and climate change. Your main influences are from the minimalist movement, removed from the traditional classical landscape. How is classical music different from the minimalist movement for you? The minimalist movement in music sprung up around the 1960s, removing itself from the classical scene …

Content warning: This piece contains discussion of intimate partner violence. There’s a myth of queer solidarity – an idea that here, in this community that values alliance and acceptance above everything, people have got your back. But a few years ago, when I found myself on the receiving end of violence, I realised that the …

Ronnie Scott and I sit in our respective homes, connected over Skype. He’s clean-shaven, his hair thrown back. Outside it’s overcast with a faint bloom of sunlight and the suggestion of rain later. When our video stream loads, he launches into a thought about the impacts of the pandemic. “It just hits you, how the …

Dramageddon is a genre-bending choose-your-own-adventure podcast set in the year 2050. Created by Jean Tong (playwright) and Lou Wall (comedian), each episode pits two queer women or non-binary guests against the climate apocalypse. We were lucky enough to chat with Jean and Lou. Tell us about yourselves and Dramageddon – how did it come about? Jean is a writer, …

I had my first crush on a woman when I was 20 years old. That was the first time I knew I was bisexual+. It took me several more years to act on that knowledge. I was waiting for some concrete proof, not so much for my own benefit but to show others I wasn’t …

Asian Ambition is a movement and platform designed to highlight Asian artists, embrace Asian sub-cultures in all their complexities, and negate the stereotypes propagated by the media of Asian people being timid, stoic and academically excellent. I’d followed the Asian Ambition account for a few months and their previous photoshoots always left me feeling grateful …

Meryl McMaster is a Canadian artist and a graduate of the Ontario College of Art and Design University (OCAD U). Through her distinct approach to photographic portraiture and self-portraiture, she explores questions of identity in relation to land, lineage, history and culture. Her work has been ­included in exhibitions throughout Canada and internationally, including the National …

It is late November 1943, and a man in his late 30s walks down the dingy streets of Montmartre, Paris. He smokes the last precious breath of a cigarette whilst a truck carrying German troops rushes past him, splashing water onto his pants leg. This man has recently left prison with a large manuscript for …

As a child, I used to sneak into my mother’s room and try on her things; nothing gave me more of a thrill than rifling through her drawers. My most coveted items were tucked away – a ­veritable treasure trove of hidden silken garments: camisoles, teddies, bras that I would stuff with tissues. I’d try them on …

Midsumma Festival is Australia’s premier queer arts and cultural festival, bringing together a diverse mix of LGBTQIA+ artists, performers, communities and audiences from 19 Jan to 9 Feb 2020. Midsumma Festival is a proud supporter of Archer Magazine.  FAMILI is a collaborative electronic music project highlighting contemporary artists from Pasifika and First Nation communities.  Arising from …

Something shifted two years ago, when the first #MeToo found itself pinned to an alluding tweet. Unwittingly, we had stumbled into a new uprising: one laced with belated anger and hot breath. One that was necessary and tingling. One itching to be found in the pages of future history books. Art, business, hospitality, sport: every …

Australia’s biggest line-up of trans and gender-diverse performers is coming together to flip gender dysphoria on its head and explore the distinctive joys that can come with being trans: this is GENDER EUPHORIA! We recorded a conversation between two cast members, Harvey Zielinski and Mx Munro, discussing performance, celebration and empowerment of Trans communities and …

‘Together’ an image essay by Luke Austin

‘Together’ is an image essay from photographer Luke Austin, which originally appeared in Archer Magazine #11, the GAZE issue. Luke spoke to Hailey Moroney about the series.  Your imagery and body of work as a whole is inherently inclusive – not only of the gay community but of the LGBTQIA+ community at large. Is this …

Where are the butch button-ups? The dungarees? Where are the rainbow buses? My exchange semester in Paris was a culture shock but not the type I was expecting. I had uprooted myself from Canberra, home to a visible queer community and the largest percentage of ‘YES’ votes for the same-sex marriage postal survey, to find …

Dashaun Wesley, the King of Vogue, sat down with Archer Magazine recently to chat all things ball culture and voguing. Dashaun was in town to host Sissy Ball, presented by Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras and Red Bull Music. What does ball culture mean to you? I say this a lot, but it’s the …

Queer Screen’s Mardi Gras Film Festival is always a highlight of our Mardi Gras calendar, because who doesn’t love the chance to sit back with some popcorn and (finally) see our communities and stories projected on the big screen?! We’ve trawled through the program of 120 films (54 feature length and 66 short films across …

James Welsby is a VCA-trained performer, choreographer and producer with a decade of professional experience. His group Phantom Limbs won “Best Dance” and “Melbourne Festival Discovery Award” at Melbourne Fringe 2013. He is the founder and artistic director of the hit internationally touring cult cabaret YUMMY. His drag alter ego is “Valerie Hex.” In Midsumma …

Internationally recognised UK drag queen Velma Celli – performed by West End star Ian Stroughair – chats with Belinda Quinn about vulnerability in drag, learning to like your creative self, and her cabaret, A Brief History of Drag, which comes to Australian audiences this January and February.   How did you get the idea to put …

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Sexuality - Gender - Identity