1989 -2017 BRISBANE ART & ACTIVISM by EVELYN HARTOGH
1989-2017 BRISBANE ART & ACTIVISM by EVELYN HARTOGH
In 1989, my political activist art practice was motivated by 3 events: the eviction of 4ZZZ from the University of Queensland; the introduction of up front university fees in the form of HECS; and the Queensland parliamentary debates concerning the decriminalisation of homosexual acts.
I moved to Brisbane in January 1989, to study journalism at the University of Queensland (UQ). A month before, at 4.17am on 14 December 1988, UQ St. Lucia campus’s public radio station 4ZZZ was raided, and threatened with eviction, by police brought in by the National Party leaning student union president Victoria Brazil. I immediately became involved in the protests, speeches, and sit ins, to try to keep 4ZZZ on campus, and retain student union funding, and spaces, for disadvantaged minority groups. HECS introduction meant the end of free university education, and increased inequality, by giving the wealthy a discount when they paid it as a lump sum, while the poor would be faced with a much larger debt differed via taxation.
I bought a ‘Mable Loves May’ singlet from the 4ZZZ lesbian radio show Dykes On Mikes. My fashion choice outraged the deeply conservative students at my residential college. There was only one other ‘alternative’ student at Women’s College, and we were dubbed the ‘swampy monsters’ by the chambray shirt, beige slack wearing conformist majority. Residential colleges frequently had ‘ugly’ dances, and students would knock on our doors and ask to borrow our ‘ugly’ dresses. They were surprised we both insulted, and treasured our vintage op shop frocks. The general consensus among the conservative students was that ‘alternative’ dressing (or thinking) was only done out of ignorance of ‘normal’ dressing (or thinking). Our conscious rejection of bland uniformity was considered a form of mental, and moral, deficiency. In the 1990s fashion was strictly divided between conservative yuppies, and alternative subcultures. Grunge, Punk, Mod, and Goth, were yet to be co-opted, commercialised, and watered down, by capitalism. In the 1990s the Brisbane lesbian community had a strict butch dress code, of flannelette shirts, Bonds T-shirts, Levi jeans, Doc Martin boots, and very short hair. Femmes like myself were routinely ejected from lesbian bars, and ended up going clubbing with gay men in venues that embraced flamboyant dressing.
On 31 August 1989 the first rally for gay law reform was held with chants of, “Say it Out and say it Loud, we are Gay and we are Proud”. I spoke at rallies at UQ, and went on Freedom Of Choice marches. I also published articles, about this discriminatory law which justified a host of human rights abuses, such as; denial of hospital visiting rights, denial of inheritance, housing, and employment; to gay bashings, and unsolved murders of queers.
Despite the decriminalisation of homosexuality in 1990, Queensland queers largely remained in the closet at work, or risked dismissal on trumped up transgressions. The Queensland anti-discrimination policy was woefully inadequate, because it made an exception for discrimination against homosexuals being lawful, if it offended the religious beliefs of, for example, an employer or a landlord. Effectively this meant that any right-wing fundamentalist Christian group had the power to censor state housing, educational facilities, libraries, shops (demanding the removal of tenants, teachers, books, comics, or anything which depicted, or mentioned, homosexuality). Homosexuality may have been decriminlaised, but discussion of it remained suppressed. Common homophobic abuse included: blaming queers for AIDS; confusing homosexuality and paedophilia; and vitriolic propaganda which misused biology, history, and religion, as ‘factual’ justification for discrimination.
Despite the weight of prejudice, queers mobilised to educate the community about safe sex. At UQ in the 1990s, I threw condoms into lecture theatres as part of the Latex Liberation Front, repeating the slogan, “if its not on, its not on”, and would later reprise this safe sex activism in cabaret performances, in the 2000s.
Law reform paved the way for the Brisbane LGBTQIA+ Pride Festival, which began in 1990 with a Rally in the city, followed by a march to Fair Day at Musgrave Park. The first few Pride marches were sombre affairs with the police, and homophobic protesters, outnumbering the marchers. The early marches focused attention on the death toll of the AIDS epidemic, a health crisis exacerbated by prejudice, and we would lay down in a silent protest on the bridge, surrounded by police, and homophobic church groups.
Amid this hostile atmosphere, in 1991, I gave my first nightclub spoken word performance at Gavin Waller’s unique queer cabaret nightclub Fag Bar where we had came to see Adrian Barker perform as Kylie Minogue. Gavin would later interview me for Scene magazine in 1994, when I was a regular performer at Bartleme Galleries doing spoken word political satire as Barbie, Domestic Wonder Woman, Lillith, and many more characters. I was doing Performance Art for events organised by Christine Ploetz and Rod Bunter at Isn’t Studios, and was a model in the chaotic, colourful and frenetic fashion parades for Mark Wilson’s label Hairy Dog.
Combining art with activism gave visibility to queers in a period of under-representation, (to the point of invisibility), in mainstream media, and culture. This silencing and invisibility was why I chose to use Popular Culture Icons as my medium, as a way of reclaiming the central cultural environment, for oppressed groups who were pushed aside, or over the edge. Performance Art allowed me to simultaneously be both the subject, and the object, of art. Spoken word was a way to reclaim the narrative of my life. To write the script, and create the character, and then be that character, and speak those words, meant I could escape the derogatory descriptions of ‘undesirable’ and ‘deviant’ for anyone in Queensland who was not white, heterosexual, male, economically privileged and/or right wing.
Mark Wilson encouraged me to make my own costumes for my spoken word and kinetic performance art, and Christine Ploetz gave me the corset that was the structural backbone of the first Wonder Woman costume I made. I was anti-capitalist, and anti-fame, knowing I was creating transient art that could not be sold in mass produced units. Ironically, I became the commodity itself, and was being booked almost weekly, for everything from unpaid benefits for causes, and community groups, to profit-shared independent art spaces, to government grant funded festivals.
During the 1990s I released a series of handmade artist books with the satirical names of ‘Soldout’, and ‘Buy’, which combined my scripts, with photographs of my characters. While publicising the books, journalists were suprised to discover I wrote my performances. There was a widespread belief in the 1990s that there were two Evelyn Hartoghs, one a writer about Barbie, the other a performer of Wonder Woman. By the 2000s this shifted to a belief that ‘Evelyn Hartogh’ was a stage/pen name, not a real person, and I would be met with disbelief, and even anger, when I introduced myself. I was completely unprepared for the bizarre side effect of fame where people would insist on knowing me well, despite having never met me, or claim to be my lifelong partner after we worked together once. It was a nonsensical experience which made me wish I had kept using the stage name ‘Eve International’ that I had used briefly in the early 1990s.
In 1992 I first performed Domestic Wonder Woman as Eve International at Boulder Lodge. This Fortitude Valley art space was run by Joseph O’Conner, who also organised the Brisbane LGBTQIA+ Pride Art Exhibition in 1993, and later became an artistic director at Metro Arts. Joseph called Yootha Nasia the truest performance artist in Brisbane, due to Yootha’s creative pop art punk dressing which outraged conservative Queensland. I became friends with Yootha in 1989 at UQ, and he modeled prolifically for Mark Wilson’s Hairy Dog. In 1995 I first performed my Slapstick David Bowie Drag King acts at Buggered, a queer art cabaret nightclub run by Yootha Nasia at 81 Elizabeth Street. Yootha later ran a similar club called Unco, at The Zoo, where in 1999 I also performed drag. Alternative queer clubs like Unco, and Buggered, were rare, and often short lived. One exception was Omo which was intermittent, and regularly changing venues, but enjoyed longevity, and great respect, in the avant garde queer club community.
The politics of drag were not as straightforward as simple cross dressing. Drag Queens, even when dressed as women, retained patriarchal power, while simultaneously making fun of the time consuming aesthetic demands placed on women. The ability for men to imitate women, simply by painting their faces, and wearing flamboyant clothes, demonstrated the complete facade of femininity. However, Drag Kings only had to strap down their breasts, and go without make-up, to allow women to experience the greater freedoms, unearned power, and automatic respect, given to masculinity. Attempting to satirise machismo was difficult because patriarchal power was utterly unquestioned, completely unrestrained, and male aggression dominated public spaces.
Since men dominated the queer clubs, Drag Queens dominated queer entertainment in Brisbane. Venues such as The Terminus, The Beat, and The Wickham in The Valley, and Options, and The Sportsman’s, in Spring Hill, all offered female impersonators lip synching under witty stage names. Women only queer clubs were few, and usually only monthly offerings in one room of a larger male dominated pub club. Drag Kings were a rarity in the 1990s, but by the 2000s Brisbane boasted the lesbian Drag King collective The Twang Gang who empowered women through drag performance. The Twang Gang were non-competitive, and inclusive, with a welcoming policy of telling women that if they could count, they could do drag.
During the 1990s The Zoo, on Ann Street in the Valley, served cheap vegetarian food because a requirement of their initial liquor licence was patrons purchasing a meal before drinks. The Zoo hosted a wide variety of artist run events, under collectives such as The Dada Club, Mindscapes, Glam Slam, university cabaret events for Queer Collaborations, National Organisation of Women Students Australia, International Women’s Day, and Blue Stocking Week, and fund-raisers for a multitude of community groups and activists. The Zoo also hosted The Brisbane Writers Fringe Festival, which was the inclusive queer, feminist, social justice, avant garde arm of The Brisbane Writer’s Festival. In later years, due to its focus on the spoken word, the fringe event became the more conservative, and mainstream Queensland Poetry Festival. However, QPF sometimes incorporated more inclusive radical satellite events into its line-up, such as the longest running spoken word event in Brisbane, No Boundaries, which ran from 1995 to 2003, before the gentrification of West End, and consequently The Boundary Hotel, pushed radical locals out.
In 1994 The Zoo hosted the Hairy Dog tribute fashion parade, after Mark Wilson’s death from ‘misadventure’. Many people believed it was yet another unsolved gay bashing, as Mark had frequently been the target of violence from right wing subcultures. His response to homophobic abuse was to sing in reply, “Boring Straight, Boring Straight, Hetero, Hetero, Hetero”. His nickname for Brisbane was Brisbanal and he was often frustrated to hear his creations simplistically described as ‘innovative’ and
‘eclectic’. Bartleme Galleries also exhibited Hairy Dog clothes as part of the memorial following his death, prior to his designs being archived at The Sydney Powerhouse Museum.
In the early to mid 1990s Bartleme Galleries was run by Edwina Bartleme and Dallas Baker, and exhibited fine art, and hosted performance art events, with a strong feminist and queer focus. At the gallery on 3 February 1995, I recited a monologue about witch hunts while dressed in a clear plastic toga, standing in a kiddie pool filling with water, while The Toilet Doilies walked on flaming stilts. The fire alarm went off, and the entire of Elizabeth Arcade, where Bartleme Galleries was situated, had to be evacuated. The source of the alarm turned out to be the restaurant beneath the gallery, and although a reviewer later claimed I “stole the show”, I was devastated, and inconsolably upset at having my performance cut short. Edwina Bartleme went on to form Women in Art (WANDA) and created queer, feminist events at venues such as Bauhaus Gallery, Man Bites Pumpkin, and the UQAM, University of Queensland Art Museum, St Lucia, Brisbane..
In 1997 Secuumb Space was located behind The Zoo, and hosted multi-art social justice focused events in association with 4ZZZ, and International Women’s Day, among others. On 31 August 1997 I performed my Baby Doll spoken word, dressed in pink bubble wrap provided by Secuumb’s Alex Gillespie. It was eerie to perform political satire about the idolising, and tearing down, of white blondes, on the very day the news reported Princess Diana had died in a car crash. In 1997 I was also writing a dissertation on Barbie, for a Masters of Arts in Women’s Studies. I spent 1997 looking like Barbie, in a year long performance of immersion into my subject matter, including a very physical slapstick act called Barbie Behaving Badly, and I did.
Many multi-art artist run social justice events took place at alternative stores in the 1990s, such as Scrabble, Man Bites Pumpkin, Trash Video, and Red Books In the Valley, and The Sitting Duck Cafe (nicknamed by locals as The Sitting Dyke Cafe), Avid Reader, Cafe Babylon In West End, and The Hub Internet Cafe in the city. These businesses acted as cheap, or even free, venues for alternative queer book, and zine launches, bands, and performance art.
In 1998 I produced Art Love Jam, a queer avant garde cabaret as part of the Brisbane LGBTQIA+ Pride Festival, and the first event was held at The Hub Internet Cafe and featured local lesbian pop stars Lollie, and Jami, queer spoken word artists Vanessa Crowther, Mark Eades, Dallas Angguish, and myself, with Yootha Nasia and Tam Patton DJing between acts, and Dougal as the MC. The event’s popularity led to James Lees coming aboard as my co-producer. James liased with the larger venue of The Zoo, and utilised his contacts to source us cheap poster printing, and distribution. Art Love Jam ran at The Zoo from 1999 to 2001, and we expanded the show to include feminist circus artists, and added a talent show, which provided a launch pad for numerous up and coming queer performers. In interviews with journalists I spoke about the political motivation for the event; namely increasing visibility, and acceptance of queers, and thus hopefully reducing queer youth suicide; addressing the sources of homophobia; and uniting the arts community under the theme of love. As the event grew in size, sponsorship partners demanded an ‘apolitical’ stance on posters and handbills. In the 1990s this was a common stance in Brisbane, with many businesses, and government funding bodies, happy to support gay artists, but not overtly ‘gay’ art.
Prior to the prolific internet social media of the 21st Century, the 1990s were dominated by street press which gave a voice to subcultures, alternative arts, and left wing politics. Promoting events was done via university publications like Semper, Utopia, and Gravity, and entertainment guides such as Time Off, Scene, Rave, Queensland Pride, Brother Sister, Q-News, Green Left Weekly, Lesbians On The Loose, and a multitude of underground zines. I joked that publishing documentation photos in the street press, with circulations of hundreds of thousands, was a way of exhibiting my character creations to a larger audience. However, utilising the media as part of my art practice, was a serious matter for me. I considered media publicity a vital component of my art practice. I consistently documented my costumed characters, and performances, as both a way to publicise, and record, a transient art form where I was both the subject and the object.
In the 1990s it was difficult to document performances. Video cameras were expensive, and very few people, besides film studies students, had access to them. I concentrated on having regular stills taken of my characters, and sent out the photos, along with media releases I wrote, to promote my gigs. Anna Zsoldos took my first documentation photos, of Domestic Wonder Woman, Barbie, and Lillith. In 1996 Ivan Nunn photographed me as Domestic Wonder Woman, both for his series of artists in their homes, and for me to use in publicity. In 1997 Alex Gillespie documented my Barbie Behaving Badly and Babydoll performances. In 1998 and 1999 Christine Polowyj photographed my new Eric/Evy character, and documented my live David Bowie and other Drag King acts. I wrote for Queensland Pride Newspaper from 2000 till 2009, and my editor Iain Clacher documented many of my characters, until his death in 2009.
For most of the 20th Century the subject, and photographer, shared equal usage rights. In 1998 this changed to a photographer automatically retaining usage rights of photos, with a few major exceptions. A performance artist would have equal usage rights to photographs, and film of live acts, even if they did not pay the person, using the camera, that they had asked to document their work. If a photographer wanted to use the photos for publicity, commercial, or fund raising, ventures, then they would need the performance artist to sign a release form. Despite these legal protections of performer’s rights, the complexities of copyright had the potential for misunderstandings, and exploitation of performers, and writers, especially. Prior to smart phones making video recording highly accessible, in the 1990s, and the 2000s, it was possible to pay a person to operate a camera, to film a few minutes of a performance, then wait months for the documentation. Many times the footage of my performances was lost, or recorded over, and once I found myself having paid for documentation, and music usage rights, only to discover I had become the unpaid performer for a camera person who declared the documentation of my live performance to now be their ‘work of art’. It was a gamble, to pay anyone to document my performances.
In 1994 I joked to journalist Nicola Robinson that I would love to vacuum the mall as Domestic Wonder Woman and use the newly installed video cameras in the Queen Street Mall to document the performance. She ran with the idea as the main angle of her article, and I photocopied my Sunday Mail interview, and sent it with a letter asking the City Heart authority for permission. They called me very confused because I wasn’t asking them for money, nor was I planning to busk, and collect money that way. My lack of capitalist impetus made no sense to them, but eventually they agreed to allow me to perform on one condition: I did not speak. I made this restriction part of the performance, and surrounded myself with friends with clipboards, and asked them to record the reactions of passers by, and if anyone questioned them, or me, we were only to reply, “we may not speak, we must be silent, or it is considered soliciting”, and, to any insult or praise, I instructed everyone to only say “Thank-You”, which was the title of the performance.
As well as the written accounts of my friends who were present, my Domestic Wonder Woman Vacuum performance elicited numerous reactions, and interpretations, over the years. In the 1994 interview promoting the event I had brought up the inequities in the amount of unpaid, or underpaid, labour done by women. I was surprised that few people linked my vacuum cleaner to a witches broomstick, but it hardly mattered in the 1990s context of privileging the infinity of audience interpretations. Many journalists later described the performance as “cleaning up the city”, or concluded that I liked to shock. One journalist, interviewing me in 2006 for the Brisbane Fringe Festival, assumed the performance was about reclaiming public spaces for women. The queerness of the performance was all but ignored, until the documentation was included in the Museum Of Brisbane’s 2010 Prejudice And Pride Exhibition which celebrated twenty years of law reform. Wonder Woman, at that time, was the only lesbian DC Comics super hero (she is now officially bisexual, having had sex with Steve Trevor in a 2017 comic released at the same time as the 2017 Wonder Woman movie). By the 2000s DC Comics had many queer comic book characters including Batwoman and White Canary.
The freedoms enjoyed by artist run events, unhampered by bureaucracy, and authority, changed dramatically after the 11 September 2001 attack on the World Trade Centre in New York. Insurance policies sky-rocketed, and security became a major issue, and expense. Events that had been free, such as Brisbane LGBTQIA+ Pride Fair Day, were faced with so many additional costs to remain legal, that they eventually had to charge an entrance fee to ensure the event broke even. In response to rising entry fees, events like the 2017 LGBTQIA+ People’s Pride Day at The South Brisbane Bowls Club offered a free alternative.
The Queensland Association For Healthy Communities (formerly Queensland Aids Council) supported numerous community queer artist events, such as 2009’s Cabaret Q which focused on the diversity in the queer community, and the specific needs of different groups. QAHC, along with many other social and health services, had its funding cut in 2012 by the LNP’s newly elected Queensland Premier Campbell Newman. In response to this funding cut, many artists, like myself, worked for free at QAHC community events and fundraisers. Andrew Costi organised an art auction to raise funds, and community groups banded together to show solidarity and support to the organisation which had supported them for so many years. QAHC continued to organise events designed to reassure minority groups in the queer community, that they would continue to provide a safe space, education, information, plus health and social services.
One event which withstood economic conservatism, and the gentrification of working class neighbourhoods, is West End’s Kurilpa Derby. This annual festival of human powered wheels began in 2007 as wheelchair races in association with The Sporting Wheelies. It quickly expanded to include bicycles, skateboards, roller skates, and numerous costume, and cart, creations of locals. Boundary Street, right up to the main intersection of West End, at Vulture Street, is closed to cars for the day, and non-petroleum modes of transport are celebrated in hilarious races. Starting with a people’s parade, performances from local dance studios, and an enormous variety of home-made costumes, and contraptions, the Kurilpa Derby gives the streets, and the arts, back to the people.
Once a suburb famous for its left wing, working class, feminist, and queer communities, West End is now prime inner city real estate. Thanks to the ongoing enthusiasm of locals from the arts community, the Kurilpa Derby has endured the rapid rise in population, and increased urban density in West End. My last performance in Brisbane was as a guest MC, as Wonder Woman, at the 10th annual Kurilpa Derby in 2017. I had previously MCed the event, as Wonder Woman, from 2010 till 2013, until health concerns forced me to take a break from performing. By 2018 I had joined the annual southern migration of Brisbane artists to more progressive cities, but am heartened to see the Kurlipa Derby still going strong.
EVELYN HARTOGH 10 SEPT 2019
1991- 2017 Live Brisbane Performance Photos – Activist Archivist – Catalogue Information
EV HARTOGH PHOTO CAPTIONS, CREDITS & ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
“It takes a village”…
1991ISNT STUDIOS HAIRYDOG designer Mark WilsonYOOTHA NASIA
1991ISNT STUDIOS HAIRYDOG hat YOOTHA NASIA
1991MARK WILSON’S HAIRYDOG clothes YOOTHA NASIA
Mark Wilson’s sewing studio for his label Hairy Dog was at Isn’t Studios in 1991. I would visit with Yootha Nasia, and we loved wearing his designs. This was how I got to know Rod Bunter and Christine Ploetz, who ran Isn’t, and who encouraged me to do performance art at their events. During the early 1990s Isn’t Studios was in a floor of an old warehouse on Gipps Street in Fortitude Valley. Photos by Yootha Nasia 1991.
1992HAIRYDOG parade1 metropolis CHRISTINE PLOETZ
1992HAIRYDOG parade2 metropolis CHRISTINE PLOETZ
1992HAIRYDOG parade3 metropolis CHRISTINE PLOETZ
1992HAIRYDOG parade4 metropolis CHRISTINE PLOETZ
1992HAIRYDOG parade5 metropolis CHRISTINE PLOETZ
I had amazing fun modelling Mark Wilson’s Hairy Dog designs at various venues in the early 1990s. I loved to dance and dress up, and the bottles of champagne consumed before parades made all us models completely uninhibited. We were encouraged to be silly, and to satirise modelling itself. The absurdity and bright colourful cheekiness of Mark’s clothes was refreshing in the context of the very conservative yuppy blandness of early 1990s mainstream fashion in Queensland. Metropolis Nightclub held indie music clubs, and special performance art events which were popular with university students, it was on the lower level in the Myer Centre in the Brisbane CBD, and is now a Target store. Photos by Christine Ploetz 1992.
1993 4ZZZ GREEN IT UP The Shamrock Hotel ev1 ANNA ZSOLDOS
1993 4ZZZ GREEN IT UP The Shamrock Hotel ev3 ANNA ZSOLDOS
1993 4ZZZ GREEN IT UP The Shamrock Hotel ev5 ANNA ZSOLDOS
1993 4ZZZ GREEN IT UP The Shamrock Hotel ev9 ANNA ZSOLDOS
1993 4ZZZ GREEN IT UP The Shamrock Hotel ev22 ANNA ZSOLDOS
After debuting new performances at art gallery events, I would later do longer sets with slides, and layered costumes, at cabarets, fundraisers, and festivals. I would begin as a Drag King in a men’s suit, then remove that (in an ungainly comical slapstick fashion) to be Tampon Women in a black 60s bathers covered in dangling tampons, then remove that to reveal a Wonder Woman costume, and eventually finish in a pink bikini as Barbie. Each costume brought forth a new character, and a new monologue. The Green it Up events were combined fundraisers with the Green Left and other social justice focused organisations such as public radio 4ZZZ, university feminist conferences such as NOWSA, university queer conferences such as Queer Collaborations, and evolving queer community events like the Brisbane Pride Festival. The Shamrock Hotel was located on the corner of Brunswick Street and St Paul’s Terrace in Fortitude Valley, the venue is now called Netherworld. Photos by Anna Zsoldos 1993.
1994BARTLEME GALLERIES ww1 IAN WADLEY
1994BARTLEME GALLERIES ww2 IAN WADLEY
1994BARTLEME GALLERIES ww3 IAN WADLEY
1994BARTLEME GALLERIES ww4 IAN WADLEY
My Domestic Wonder Woman performances involved gentle destruction and messy cleaning, with very little speaking. I would create a mess in disguise, then remove my outer clothes to reveal a Wonder Woman costume, and begin cleaning up the spills, and debris. They were anti-performance in the way they were designed to seem like an accident being fixed, and not actual entertainment. Nonetheless they were popular, and often requested for group shows. Bartleme Galleries was upstairs in the Elizabeth Arcade in the Brisbane CBD, and was run by Edwina Bartleme and Dallas Baker. Photos by Ian Wadley 1993.
1994QUEEN ST MALL wonder vacuums1 DETAIL IAN WADLEY
1994QUEEN ST MALL wonder vacuums1 IAN WADLEY
Originally conceived as a joke about using the newly installed security cameras in the CBD as a form of free documentation, and part of my anti-capitalist, and anti-fame FREE ART LIVE venture, my vacuuming the Queen Street Mall, as Wonder Woman, became a legendary Brisbane performance. It has been highlighted in numerous retrospectives of the city’s art history. This act of private labour, in public space, occurred on a Sunday afternoon on 19 June 1994 on the Queen Street Mall, then was repeated on 24 December 1994 on the Brunswick Street Mall. Photos of June Queen Street performance by Ian Wadley 1994.
1995BARTLEME GALLERIES dragking1 IAN WADLEY
1995BARTLEME GALLERIES dragking2 IAN WADLEY
1995BARTLEME GALLERIES dragking3 IAN WADLEY
Prior to this Drag King monologue at Bartleme Galleries in Elizabeth Arcade, I had cross dressed as a prelude to revealing a female character under my men’s suit. This performance was about the way misogyny, and environmental destruction, share the same lack of ethical responsibility for consequences. My later Drag King acts were of the more traditional comedic singing, and dancing, as a male celebrity such as David Bowie or Frank Sinatra. Photos by Ian Wadley 1995.
1996MAN BITES PUMPKIN Lilith ROSZ CRAIG
I was very surprised about the popularity of my Lillith performances, since they challenged widely accepted Biblical interpretations of the first wife of Adam, and her subsequent marriage to Lucifer. After debuting the act at Bartleme Galleries I was requested to make repeat performances at numerous feminist events, such as the Femme Fetish exhibition, curated by Edwina Bartleme, and later at the Losergurrl/Yogurt Zine launch, both held at the alternative arts shop Man Bites Pumpkin on Ann Street in Fortitude Valley. Photo by Rosz Craig 1996.
1999ART LOVE JAM The Zoo godiva1
1999ART LOVE JAM The Zoo godiva2
My Godhiva act was performed only once at the Brisbane Pride Festival’s Art Love Jam Cabaret. Godhiva was a monologue while dressed in fur (which was removed awkwardly) to followed by a topless dance (with a very long wig to cover my bare breasts) to David Bowie’s ‘All the Mad Men’. The Art Love Jam cabaret was co-produced by myself and James Lees, and was held at The Zoo on Ann Street in Fortitude Valley for 3 years. Photographer unknown 1999.
1999GLAM SLAM The Zoo CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
1999GLAM SLAM The Zoo drag king David bowie1 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
1999GLAM SLAM The Zoo drag king David bowie2 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
1999GLAM SLAM The Zoo drag king David bowie3 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
After the success of the 1999 Art Love Jam Cabaret at The Zoo in Ann Street in Fortitude Valley, our crew, and many artists, were invited to assist in production of an artist’s club as part of the Queensland Art Gallery’s Asia Pacific Triennial. I walked the event as Wonder Woman, then later removed my costume to perform as David Bowie singing ‘Boys Keep Swinging’. Women from Vulcana Circus performed as my crazed fans, and I spent the act attempting to sing, and dance, while fending off fans grabbing me. Eventually I was overpowered by the fans, who tore apart my costume (even tossing my merkin in the air), revealing my body covered in gaffer tape. Photos by Christine Polowyj 1999.
1999UNCO The Zoo drag king David bowie1 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
1999UNCO The Zoo drag king David bowie2 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
1999UNCO The Zoo drag king David bowie3 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
1999UNCO The Zoo drag king David bowie4 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
1999UNCO The Zoo drag king David bowie6 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
1999UNCO The Zoo drag king David bowie7 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
1999UNCO The Zoo drag king David bowie8 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
1999UNCO The Zoo drag king David bowie9 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
I added ‘Suffragette City’ and ‘Rebel Rebel’ to my slapstick David Bowie Drag King repertoire. The grand climax to the act was tossing my guitar in the air and catching it, then swinging it around as if to throw it into the crowd, but pulling it back at the last minute, then finishing with the splits. Unco was an alternative queer nightclub run by Yootha Nasia at The Zoo on Ann Street in Fortitude Valley. As well as music, it regularly had installations and performances from a diverse array of artists, as well as performance art from Yootha Nasia. Photos by Christine Polowyj 1999.
2000ART LOVE JAM The Zoo drag king chicago1
2000ART LOVE JAM The Zoo drag king chicago2
2000ART LOVE JAM The Zoo drag king chicago3
In 2000 I performed a series of hermaphrodite Drag Monarch acts, where I would be both male and female at once. In this act I combine tap dancing with hat and cane tricks done either too fast or too slow, in slapstick, almost mime fashion, to songs from the original Broadway cast recording of Chicago. This Brisbane Pride Festival Art Love Jam cabaret at The Zoo in Fortitude Valley actually received funding from the Brisbane City Council, which was unprecedented for queer events in Queensland at this time (after all it had only been a decade since homosexual acts were decriminalised). Photographer unknown 2000.
2000OMO drag king Kermit the frog happy feet CHRISTINE POLOWYJ2
2000OMO drag king Kermit the frog happy feet2 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
2000OMO drag king Kermit the frog happy feet3 CHRISTINE POLOWYJ
For a performance at the queer alternative club OMO in Fortitude Valley I used tracks from The Muppet Show, in a hermaphrodite Drag Monarch act, where I was both male and female at once. Kermit’s rendition of ‘Happy Feet’ was an anarchic, out of control frenzy, which required such fast tapping that I would need to sit, and tap with my knees bent in front of me, by the end of the song. OMO was a queer club which offered an alternative to the mainstream dance party techno music. It was held at various venues in Fortitude Valley during the 1990s and 2000s, and featured bands such as Anal Traffic, and performances from numerous underground queer artists. Photos by Christine Polowyj 2000.
2001ART LOVE JAM The Zoo Doris gay day1
2001ART LOVE JAM The Zoo Doris gay day2
From Drag King to Drag Monarch to Drag Queen, by 2001 I was performing ballet dances, while singing Doris Day songs, for the Brisbane Pride Festival Art Love Jam cabaret held at The Zoo on Ann Street in Fortitude Valley. Photographer unknown 2001.
2006 BRISBANE FRINGE metro arts lillith1 IAIN CLACHER
2006 BRISBANE FRINGE metro arts lillith2 IAIN CLACHER
2006 BRISBANE FRINGE metro arts ww1 IAIN CLACHER
2006 BRISBANE FRINGE metro arts ww2 MAXINE STIBBE
In 2006 I expanded my Wonder Woman, Barbie, and Lillith, scripts into a three act one women show as part of the Brisbane Theatre Festival Fringe at Metro Arts in Edward Street Brisbane. Critics complained the show was too political (in other words left wing, not the ‘normal’ right wing), and too intellectual (in other words challenging instead of soothing or exploitative). Photographs by Iain Clacher and Maxine Stibbe 2006.
2007 MULTICULTURAL FESTIVAL SouthBankTafe ww1
2007 MULTICULTURAL FESTIVAL SouthBankTafe ww2
I decided to lighten up my Wonder Woman act with more physical comedy, in a parody of her twirling to magically change costume. A decade before the release of the Wonder Woman movie, this act was about Wonder Woman going to Hollywood and being told all the reasons why she shouldn’t be in a movie. This was written in the context of the real life stalling of numerous Wonder Woman film projects in the 1990s, and 2000s. South Bank Tafe is located in South Brisbane. Photographer unknown 2007.
2009QAHC’S CABARET Q drag king David bowie1 NATHAN STREET
2009QAHC’S CABARET Q drag king David bowie2 NATHAN STREET
2009QAHC’S CABARET Q drag king David bowie3 NATHAN STREET
2009QAHC’S CABARET Q drag king David bowie4 NATHAN STREET
2009QAHC’S CABARET Q drag king gay pare NATHAN STREET
After my performance at The Brisbane Pride Festival’s Homo-nu-erotic Cabaret, curated by Chris Maver, I was booked for The Queensland Association of Healthy Communities (formerly, and now again The Queensland Aids Council) event Cabaret Q, held at a number of venues in Fortitude Valley, Newstead, and New Farm. I performed two Drag King acts, the first as David Bowie singing ‘Sorrow’, complete with a toy saxophone, then as Toddy from Victor/Victoria singing ‘Gay Paree’, performing hat tricks, and tap dancing. Photographs by Nathan Street 2009.
2010 GENTLEMENS’S TEA PARTY
At The Gentlemen’s Tea Party, curated by Zenobia Frost, held at The Woolloongabba Antique Centre, I performed as Frank Sinatra singing ‘I’ve got you under my skin’ while tap dancing, and performing physical comedy as a person with a terrible rash using their can to scratch themselves while performing hat, and cane tricks, and tap dancing. Photographer unknown 2010.
2010 SUNDAY BEST west end
Organised by the West End Community Association, Sunday Best gave young models, young designers, and local businesses, an opportunity to parade their clothes to industry professionals, in a carnival atmosphere of stalls by local artists. I MCed the event as Wonder Woman. Photo by Tony Robinson 2010.
2011 KURILPA DERBY west end1
2011 KURILPA DERBY west end2
The Kurilpa Derby was organised by the West End Community Association. Cars were closed off to most of Boundary Street so locals could enjoy comedy races in non-petrol reliant contraptions (many of their own invention as well as bicycles, skateboards, roller-skates, and much more). I MCed the event as Wonder Woman for several years. Photos by Tony Robertson 2011.
2012KURILPA DERBY west end1 HILLARY GREEN
2012KURILPA DERBY west end2 HILLARY GREEN
The Kurilpa Derby was organised by the West End Community Association. Cars were closed off to most of Boundary Street so locals could enjoy comedy races in non-petrol reliant contraptions (many of their own invention as well as bicycles, skateboards, roller-skates, and much more). I MCed the event as Wonder Woman for several years. Photos by Hillary Green 2012.
2012PRIDE FAIR DAY with Tricky Boombang AKA Mary Alexander HILLARY GREEN
By 2012, the Brisbane Pride Fair Day had moved from its original 1990 onwards location of Musgrave Park in South Brisbane, to Perry Park in Bowen Hills. The Pride festival was also shifted to September after two decades of being held during June and July. I often performed at the QAHC (Queensland Association for Healthy Communities formerly, and now again, called the Queensland AIDS Council) tent as Wonder Woman, and numerous Drag King personas. Tricky Boombang, pictured here, performed on the main stage, and remains one of Brisbane’s most popular, and sought after Drag Kings. Photo by Hillary Green 2012.
2012QAHC rally after funding cuts DESI ACHILLEOS
In 2012 the newly elected fundamentalist religious right wing state government, led by Campbell Newman, sacked thousands of public servants, and cut the funding to numerous social support, and health services, including The Queensland Association for Healthy Communities (formerly, and now again, The Queensland Aids Council). Numerous rallies highlighted the disastrous implications for minority groups who relied on such services for a myriad of health issues. Despite the loss of funding, QAHC was kept running by volunteers, although its services were drastically reduced. Photo by Desi Achilleos 2012.
2012QAHC tent PRIDE FAIR DAY ww1 HILARY GREEN
2012QAHC tent PRIDE FAIR DAY ww2
At the 2012 Brisbane Pride Fair Day, The Queensland Association for Healthy Communities (formerly, and now again, The Queensland Aids Council) offered a safe space, entertainment, and information for the community who was reeling from the increase in homophobic abuse, encouraged by the regressive policies of the conservative government..
Photos by Hillary Green and Anthony Smith 2012.
2013LAURA ST FESTIVAL drag king cat gay paree 1
2013LAURA ST FESTIVAL drag king cat gay paree 2
2013LAURA ST FESTIVAL drag king cat gay paree 3
2013LAURA ST FESTIVAL drag king cat gay paree 4
2013LAURA ST FESTIVAL drag king cat gay paree 5
2013LAURA ST FESTIVAL drag king cat gay paree 6
The Laura Street Festival was a block party organised by the many artists who lived in share houses on Laura Street in West End. It was free, and each house offered different art, entertainment, music, food, workshops, and many other shared creative endeavours. I performed an acapella comedy act singing Gay Paree from Victor/Victoria, dressed as a cat. Photographer unknown 2013.
2013QAHC ART SHOW FUNDRAISER cat1 BRENDAN BURKE
2013QAHC ART SHOW FUNDRAISER cat2 RICK NG
2013QAHC ART SHOW FUNDRAISER cat3 RICK NG
2013QAHC ART SHOW FUNDRAISER cat4 ROSZ CRAIG
2013QAHC ART SHOW FUNDRAISER cat5 ROSZ CRAIG
2013QAHC ART SHOW FUNDRAISER cat6 ROSZ CRAIG
2013QAHC ART SHOW FUNDRAISER cat7 ROSZ CRAIG
The queer artistic community banded together to support, and raise much needed funds for The Queensland Association for Healthy Communities (formerly, and now again, The Queensland Aids Council) during the reign of the religious right conservative state government led by Premier Campbell Newman. Andrew Costi organised this Art Auction, and, at the opening, I performed a tap dance while singing Gay Paree from Victor/Victoria, and dressed as a cat. Photos by Brendan Burke, Rick Ng, and Rosz Craig 2013.
2013QAHC Community Group Showcase KATRINA KILPI
The Lesbian and Trans Community Group Showcase was one of the many morale boosting events during the funding cuts of the religious right conservative state government led by Premier Campbell Newman. The Queensland Association for Healthy Communities (formerly, and now again, The Queensland Aids Council) gave diverse arts, health, social, and other community groups, the chance to explain what their organisation offered in terms of services, support and human connection. I MCed the event as Wonder Woman. Photo by Katrina Kilpi 2013.
2014SCRABBLED cat1 MARISSA ALLEN
2014SCRABBLED cat2 MARISSA ALLEN
2014SCRABBLED cat3 MARISSA ALLEN
2014SCRABBLED cat4 MARISSA ALLEN
2014SCRABBLED cat5 MARISSA ALLEN
2014SCRABBLED cat6 MARISSA ALLEN
The band Scrabbled, was named after the early 1990s alternative arts shop Scrabble, which operated as a band practice space for local bands such as Clag. Bek Moore (both the lead singer of Clag and Scrabbled) organised this event, and invited me to participate in Scrabbled’s set, and as their ‘house cat’. I behaved like a cat, getting in people’s way, stretching with no regard to the context, rubbing up against people, grooming in an ungainly fashion, and napping in inappropriate spots and poses. For their final song the band woke me up, and asked for a crazy cat dance, which I happily obliged. The Beetle Bar venue, on upper Roma St in the Brisbane, was interestingly a venue I had performed at many times in the past, when the venue had different names. Photos by Marissa Allen 2014.
2017KURILPA DERBY West End
Between 2014, and 2017, my health became my priority, after a severe illness incapacitated me. Unfortunately I had to turn down many gig offers, and MCing requests. However, I made an exception when the West End Community Association contacted me requesting I do a guest spot MCing for the Kurilpa Derby’s tenth anniversary. I had greatly enjoyed my time as MC of the Kurilpa Derby in its early years, and was thrilled to see how large the event had become. Despite the population explosion, and gentrification of West End, the Kurilpa Derby still closed off most of Boundary Street to traffic, and locals enjoyed the delightfully absurd races in non-petrol reliant modes of transport. It remains a day where people take back the streets in a celebration of environmentally friendly transport, and community bonds. By pure chance this guest spot became my last performance in Queensland, before I moved to Victoria in the following year. Photo by Tony Robertson 2017.
1992 -2013 Queer Brisbane Posters & Press,
EV HARTOGH POSTER & PRESS CAPTIONS
1992 24 NovBOULDERLODGE
I used the stage name Eve International for my first performance at Boulder Lodge, in Fortitude Valley, for Isn’t Studios’ Performance Art Trap event. Dressed as Domestic Wonder Woman I washed a large mirror with my back to the audience, then mopped up the sudsy mess on the floor, rarely speaking, while in the background played a sped up version of ‘Evelyn’ by Clan of Xymox, which I had recorded at 45rpms from a 33rpm album. Poster design by Isn’t Studios 1992.
1992 25 AugHAIRYDOG
Modelling the clothes was a wild free for all at ‘Pippi Longstocking has a Hysterectomy’. The Metropolis Nightclub, at the bottom of the Myer Centre in Brisbane (now a Target store) hosted alternative DJ and art events such as parades of Mark Wilson’s Hairy Dog fashion designs. Poster design by Mark Wilson 1992.
1993 7 FebBOULDERLODGE
I did a different version of my Domestic Wonder Woman performance with the disturbing background music of an old Commodore 64 game tape, creating a soundscape similar to a fax or dial up internet connection. The ‘Joy’ lesbian dance and art event was held at Boulder Lodge, and organised by Trish Weston. Poster design by Trish Weston 1993.
1993 9 JulyISNTSTUDIOS
I collaborated with Meridian Andonov on a performance called ‘And She Cried Out’, centred around an installation of a sculpture of a woman made from white sugar. We used water and a variety of tools to wet and melt the sculpture. ‘Weelboro’ (a joke on Marlboro written upside down) combined bands and performance art. Isn’t Studios, at Gipps Street in Fortitude Valley, presented a number of events using popular culture logo formats in the poster design. Poster design by Isn’t Studios 1993.
1993 13 OctBARTLEMEGALLERIES
For ‘Serial Performers’ I debuted ‘My Body Project’ which included the superhero character Tampon Woman. Bartleme Galleries, upstairs in the Elizabeth Arcade in Brisbane, held regular performance art events curated by Edwina Bartleme, and Dallas Baker. Poster design by Bartleme Galleries 1993.
1994 17 JuneBARTLEMEGALLERIES
For ‘Sham: Not so Glam’ I debuted my first Barbie performance called ‘Barbie Copyright Mattel’. I installed a dressing room complete with a mirror and rack of bright pink clothes, and as I recited my monologue in character, I repeatedly changed my outfit and checked myself in the mirror. I wore a pale pink vintage bikini as my base costume. Interestingly, all the critiques, and subseqent jokes I made about Barbie in 1994, would no longer work in the context of the 2018 diverse body shape, and even flat footed, versions of Barbie currently on offer from the manufacture Mattel. Bartleme Galleries, upstairs in the Elizabeth Arcade in Brisbane, held regular performance art events curated by Edwina Bartleme, and Dallas Baker. Poster design by Bartleme Galleries with Wonder Woman illustration by Evelyn Hartogh 1994.
My first ever media interview was with Gavin Waller (the producer of Fag Bar) for The Scene, a street press local entertainment guide. Press Clipping 1994 June 15 Gavin Waller Spotlight On Evelyn Hartogh Scene P.39.
In 1994 I vacuumed the Queen Street Mall in Brisbane dressed as Wonder Woman. I was interviewed by the Queensland Newspapers. Press Clippings 1994 June 15 Des Partridge Women’s Role A Real Wonder Courier Mail p.4. and 1994 April 3 Nicola Robinson Acting Up in the Streets Sunday Mail p.140.
In 1994 Brendan Smith styled people and Anna Zsoldos photographed them for a regular feature in the popular street press Time-Off. Press Clipping 1994 May 15 Anna Zsoldos New Brisbane Street Directory Time-Off.
1995 1 juneGREENITUP
The Green it Up events were combined fundraisers with the Green Left and other social justice focused organisations such as public radio 4ZZZ, university feminist conferences such as NOWSA, university queer conferences such as Queer Collaborations, and evolving queer community events like the Brisbane Pride Festival. I performed a showcase of acts with layered costumes. The Shamrock Hotel was located on the corner of Brunswick Street and St Paul’s Terrace in Fortitude Valley, the venue is now called Netherworld. Poster 1 June Showcase The Shamrock Green It Up/Queer Collaborations Benefit 1995.
1995 26 may350UPPERROMAST
A collaboration between indie band and performance artists, ‘Big Time Small Fi’ celebrated the do it yourself alternative culture of the 1990s underground art world. I performed a showcase of acts with layered costumes. I performed at this venue a number of times when it had different names such as The Beetle Bar in 2014. Poster 26 May Showcase Upper Roma St Big Time Small Fi Warehouse Party 1995.
1995 29 juneGREENITUP
The Green it Up events were combined fundraisers with the Green Left and other social justice focused organisations such as public radio 4ZZZ, university feminist conferences such as NOWSA, university queer conferences such as Queer Collaborations, and evolving queer community events like the Brisbane Pride Festival. I performed a showcase of acts with layered costumes. The Shamrock Hotel was located on the corner of Brunswick Street and St Paul’s Terrace in Fortitude Valley, the venue is now called Netherworld. Poster 29 June Showcase The Shamrock Green It Up/Pride Benefit 1995.
1995 31 AugTHEZOO
Blue Stocking Week celebrated women in tertiary education and was one of the many feminist events organised every year by university student unions. Poster 31 Aug Showcase The Zoo Blue Stocking Week Cabaret with illustrations by Dominic O’Leary 1995.
1995 march 18BARTLEMEGALLERIES
I included a mosaic self portrait of myself in a performance as Barbie in the ‘Neglected Erotica’
at Bartleme Galleries in the Elizabeth Arcade in Brisbane. Poster Bartleme Galleries 1995.
‘Fruit: A Queer Anthology’ was a publication released during the 1995 Brisbane Pride Festival and it collected writing and images by local queer writers and artists. The graphic design and editing was done by Nick Douglas. One of my Drag King photos taken by Anna Zsoldos was chosen for the cover. A lot of men asked who the ‘cute cover boy’ was, and were surprised it was a girl in drag. Press Clipping 1995 June Front Cover Evelyn Hartogh Fruit: A Queer Anthology
In 1995 I released my first collection of performance scripts and documentation, called ‘Soldout’. Press Clipping 1995 Sept 20 Evelyn Hartogh’s Book Soldout Green Left
1996 13 SeptBAUHAUSGALLERY
‘Virgins, Violets, Vamps’ was organised by Edwina Bartleme and was held at Bauhaus Gallery on George Street in Brisbane City. I performed a variation on my Barbie act, this time on ballet points with another performer dressed as GI Joe. Poster 13 Sept Barbie C. Mattel Virgins Violets Vamps Bauhaus Gallery 1996.
1996 22 SeptMANBITESPUMPKIN
1996 24 juneMANBITESPUMPKIN
‘Femme Fetish Feitico’ was one of the many events created by Wanda (Women in Art), a feminist collective including Edwina Bartleme and Fe Skoufa. I was very surprised about the popularity of my Lillith performances, since they challenged widely accepted Biblical interpretations of the first wife of Adam, and her subsequent marriage to Lucifer. After debuting the act at Bartleme Galleries I was requested to make repeat performances at numerous feminist events, such as the Femme Fetish exhibition, curated by Edwina Bartleme, and later at the Losergurrl/Yogurt Zine launch, both held at the alternative arts shop Man Bites Pumpkin on Ann Street in Fortitude Valley. Posters 22 Sept Lillith Man Bites Pumpkin Losergurrl/Yogurt Zine Benefit and 14 June Lillith Man Bites Pumpkin Femme Fetish Exhibition 1996.
Perhaps the most controversial of interviews I have ever done, not for anything in it, but from assumptions made after it was published. In the photo I had stuffed my bikini with kitchen sponges which poked out, but a persistent rumour evolved that I had a ‘nip slip’. Press Clipping 1996 Sept 22 Nicola Robinson Plastic Women And Concrete Responses Sunday Mail P.92.
1997 7 MarchSECUUMBSPACE
I debuted Barbie Behaving Badly at this event, during my year spent as Barbie. ‘Women Behaving Badly’ was one of the many International Women’s Day events created by Wanda (Women in Art), a feminist collective including Edwina Bartleme and Fe Skoufa. Poster: 7 March Barbie Behaving Badly Secuumb Space International Women’s Day Exhibition 1997.
1997 18 SeptCAFEBABYLON
Held in the back courtyard of Cafe Babylon on Boundary Street in West End, ‘With Baited Breath’ was a queer fringe arts event organised by the Fringe Writers Collective. Poster: 18 Sept Showcase Cafe Babylon With Baited Breath 1997.
1997 31 augSECUUMBSPACE
Wearing a costume made of pink bubble wrap I debuted my Baby Doll performance (a satire on the fragile worship of the virgin/whore white blonde woman) mere hours after the news broke that Princess Diana had died in a car crash in Paris. Secuumb Space was run by artists including Alexander Gillespie who had given me the bubble wrap, and who I hired to photograph my Baby Doll character. Poster: 31 Aug Baby Doll Plastic Lovers Secuumb Space 1997.
1997june julySECUUMB SPACE
I performed Barbie Behaving Badly at this community artist organised fundraiser for public radio station 4ZZZ held at Secuumb Space, behind The Zoo on Ann Street in Fortitude Valley. Poster: 15 March Barbie Behaving Badly Secuumb Space Transmittance 4zzz Benefit 1997.
1998 4 JuneQUEERSALOON
After debuting new performances at art gallery events, I would later do longer sets with slides, and layered costumes, at cabarets, fundraisers, and festivals. I would begin as a Drag King in a men’s suit, then remove that (in an ungainly comical slapstick fashion) to be Tampon Women in a black 60s bathers covered in dangling tampons, then remove that to reveal a Wonder Woman costume, and eventually finish in a pink bikini as Barbie. Poster: 4 June Showcase The Capital UQ Union Queer Saloon 1998.
1999 9 JulyTHEZOO
My Godhiva act was performed only once at the Brisbane Pride Festival’s Art Love Jam Cabaret. Godhiva was a monologue while dressed in fur (which was removed awkwardly) to followed by a topless dance (with a very long wig to cover my bare breasts) to David Bowie’s ‘All the Mad Men’. The Art Love Jam cabaret was co-produced by myself and James Lees, and was held at The Zoo on Ann Street in Fortitude Valley for 3 years. Poster design by Christine Polowyj 1999.
1999 29 AprilTHEZOO
Mindscapes was a joint venture from musicians Tara Pattendon, and Rin Charlton, along with artists from the Angry Mime. I performed a Drag King act as David Bowie singing ‘I can’t help thinking about me’ while doing hat and cane tricks. Poster: 29 April Drag King David Bowie The Zoo Mindscapes 1999.
As well as booking the acts for the Brisbane Pride Festival Art Love Jam cabaret, I also did the publicity interviews organised by my co-producer James Lees. Press Clipping 1999 July 7 Matt Connors Love Is Time Off P.25.
As well as booking the acts for the Brisbane Pride Festival Art Love Jam cabaret, I also did the publicity interviews organised by my co-producer James Lees. Press Clippings 1999 Nov 11 Wickham Drag King Brother Sister P.25. and 1999 Sept 16 Evelyn Brother Sister P.8. and 1999 Sept 16 Glam Slam Brother Sister P.38.
Here I am dressed as Wonder Woman and acting silly for the newspaper photographer with James Lees, my co-producer of the Brisbane Pride Festival Art Love Jam and Glam Slam cabarets. Press Clipping 1999 Sept 17 Glam Slam Pulse Courier Mail P.4.
As well as booking the acts for the Brisbane Pride Festival Art Love Jam cabaret, I also did the publicity interviews organised by my co-producer James Lees. Press Clipping 2000 July 26 Lawrence English Art Love Jam: Sweet Flavours Time Off P.38
As well as booking the acts for the Brisbane Pride Festival Art Love Jam cabaret, I also did the publicity interviews organised by my co-producer James Lees. Press Clipping 2001 July 4 Bridget Hayes Love Is The Answer Scene Magazine P.42.
As well as booking the acts for the Brisbane Pride Festival Art Love Jam cabaret, I also did the publicity interviews organised by my co-producer James Lees. 2001 July 4 Trent Dalton Love In Brisbane News P.12 and 2001 June 29 Art Love Jam, Q News P.8.
2009 30 SeptCABARETQ
After my performance at The Brisbane Pride Festival’s Homo-nu-erotic Cabaret, curated by Chris Maver, I was booked for The Queensland Association of Healthy Communities (formerly, and now again The Queensland Aids Council) event Cabaret Q, held at a number of venues in Fortitude Valley, Newstead, and New Farm. I performed two Drag King acts, the first as David Bowie singing ‘Sorrow’, complete with a toy saxophone, then as Toddy from Victor/Victoria singing ‘Gay Paree’, performing hat tricks, and tap dancing. Poster: 30 Sept Drag King Acts Cabaret Q QAHC 2009.
2010 4 JuneMUSEUMOFBRISBANE
In 2010 I was surprised to walk into The Museum of Brisbane to see the photograph of me dressed as Wonder Woman vacuuming the Queen Street Mall in 1996. It was from the photos, which went with a 6 minute talk that was recorded by the Queer History Group project, organised by Shirlene Robinson. The 2010 Museum of Brisbane ‘Prejudice & Pride’ Exhibition displayed ephemera including photos, press clippings, newspapers, handbills, and many other items relating to the queer history of Queensland. It celebrated twenty years since decriminalisation of homosexual acts, and twenty years of the Brisbane Pride Festival. Programme 4 June to 17 October Wonder Woman In Absentia (Performance Photographs) ‘LGBT Lives. Evelyn.Mov’ (Digital Story) ‘Prejudice & Pride’ Exhibition Museum Of Brisbane 2010
2010 12 JuneQAHC
In this performance I did a spoken word as Wonder Woman, and a Drag King act as David Bowie singing ‘Sorrow’. The Brisbane Pride Festival Fair Day was first held in Musgrave Park in South Brisbane in 1990. I was held there every year until it moved to Perry Park in Bowen Hills in 2012. Programme 12 June Drag King David Bowie QAHC Brisbane LGBTQIA+ Pride Fair Day, Musgrave Park 2010.
2010 14 Feb Gentleman’s Tea Party
At The Gentlemen’s Tea Party, curated by Zenobia Frost, held at The Woolloongabba Antique Centre, I performed as Frank Sinatra singing ‘I’ve got you under my skin’ while tap dancing, and performing physical comedy as a person with a terrible rash using their can to scratch themselves while performing hat, and cane tricks, and tap dancing. Poster 14 Feb Drag King Frank Sinatra Gentlemen’s Tea Party The Ruby Fizz Society For Superior People Woolloongabba Antique Centre 2010.
2010 18 ApriQAHC
At first queeriousity youth festival I performed as a cowboy Dean Martin singing ‘Houston’, then revealed a Wonder Woman costume beneath and performed some spoken word. Poster 18 April Cowboy Wonder Woman Queeriosity Visible Ink Youth Space 2010.
2013 15 NovQAHC
The queer artistic community banded together to support, and raise much needed funds for The Queensland Association for Healthy Communities (formerly, and now again, The Queensland Aids Council) during the reign of the religious right conservative state government led by Premier Campbell Newman. Andrew Costi organised this Art Auction, and, at the opening, I performed a tap dance while singing Gay Paree from Victor/Victoria, and dressed as a cat. Poster 15 November Her Royal Fluffiness Healthy Communities Fundraiser Art Show Discount Warehouse Gallery 2013.
2013 24 NovLAURASTFESTIVAL
The Laura Street Festival was a block party organised by the many artists who lived in share houses on Laura Street in West End. It was free, and each house offered different art, entertainment, music, food, workshops, and many other shared creative endeavours. I performed an acapella comedy act singing Gay Paree from Victor/Victoria, dressed as a cat. Poster 24 November Her Royal Fluffiness Laura Street Festival 2013 Laura Street West End 2013.
2013 25 MaycommunityshowcaseQAHC
2013 Community Showcase QAHC
The Lesbian and Trans Community Group Showcase was one of the many morale boosting events during the funding cuts of the religious right conservative state government led by Premier Campbell Newman. The Queensland Association for Healthy Communities (formerly, and now again, The Queensland Aids Council) gave diverse arts, health, social, and other community groups, the chance to explain what their organisation offered in terms of services, support and human connection. I MCed the event as Wonder Woman. Poster 25 May Mc Wonder Woman ‘Lesbian & Transgender Community Groups Showcase’ Lesbian Health Action Group QAHC 2013