Seeking to escape the hyper-masculine, materialistic image that urban gay men were projecting in the post-Stonewall decade of the 1970s, a group met in the Arizona desert in the summer of 1979 and began a movement: Radical Faerie; a back-to-the-garden foray into spirituality, rural living, environmental awareness, Pagan rituals and sexual exploration away from the confines of Pop culture.
Opening this Saturday evening, February 28th, at Antebellum Gallery in Hollywood, an exhibit will mark Radical Faerie’s 30th Anniversary, as well as explore its origins and ongoing existence.
In its early stages, the Radical Faeries were made up only of gay men, but today the movement is a cornucopia of gender and sexual identities–essentially every conservative Republican’s living nightmare. Rick Castro, Antebellum’s owner and curator, is aware of the cultural implications in the age of Obama:
As with all good ideas, the Radical Faerie was way ahead of his time. I remember going to a few gatherings during the ’80s, and seeing it, (at the time) as a post-hippy movement.
Now on the 30-year anniversary, the Radical Faerie is perhaps more relevant for today– a reaction against our post-tech, over-stressed, hyper-comsumerist urban life style. Faerie’s are pro-community, pro-communication, pro-spirit over judgmental religions; very timely indeed. We need the Radical Faerie more than ever– he is natural, he is hearty, he is friendly and he is green!
A full schedule of exhibition events running though April 1st is at the Antebellum site.
Opening reception with special performance by Ian MacKinnon, Saturday, Feb. 28th, 7 – 9 PM; $10 cover, $5 if in costume, nudist’s free; Antebellum Gallery 1643 N. Las Palmas, Los Angeles 90028; phone 323-856-0667