Posted By Sandra Alland

Hello friends,

I'm very chuffed that the nice folks at Edinburgh's Forest Publications have gone into a second printing with my wee short story chapbook, Here's To Wang!

In other news, Zorras play Words Per Minute in Glasgow this Sunday at 3:30pm at Creation Studios. It's a grand wee series, check it out here.

And soon I shall be visiting Canadialand, and doing a bunch of readings/performances. Read about them on my myspace. (Special note about the Lab Cab Festival: there are TWO readings per day, one at 1:15 pm and one at 4:15pm on both the 18th and 18th of September).

Keep up the good fight,

xo


 
Posted By Sandra Alland

The lovely Karen Miranda Augustine has interviewed me for The Artist's Business Digest, about my micropress sandraslittlebookshop.

In other news, you can now download Zorras' songs online from CD Baby!

In still other news, here is my article in Xtra! about the censorship of queer and trans art in Glasgow.

xo


 
Posted By Sandra Alland

A wee trip to the Glasgow Gallery of Modern Art has revealed that they still have not replaced the light bulbs for my show (A Spot of b)other: LGBTI Deaf and Disabled Cutures), after promising to do so over two months ago. Almost half of the lights have been burned out for the duration of the exhibit, which is supposed to be accessible to people with disabilities. Never mind that a group of blind and partially sighted people are formally visiting the exhibition this week...

In other GoMA disasters, it has just come to my attention that they placed my audio tour of the show online months ago without seeking permission from me or my collaborators, thus globally outing participants in terms of sexual orientation, gender identity, disabilities and mental health status. After several complaints they have now removed the download, but it has been up for months without our knowledge and may have caused irreparable damage. Just the latest in a long line of ineptitude and disrespect from Culture and Sport Glasgow.

b)other placed a formal complaint regarding discrimination on 30 November that still has not been responded to. Amazing.


 
Posted By Sandra Alland

"This eye-opening exhibition explores complex identities and histories of LGBTI deaf and disabled Scots. Artist Sandra Alland, in collaboration with like-minded artists, expresses true dedication to equality and human rights through the effective use of portraits, poems and film." - Diva Magazine

A Spot of b)other continues at GoMA until 21 February.


 
Posted By Sandra Alland

I am currently liking Kristiane Taylor. I hope you like her too. Read her poems here.

xo


 
Posted By Sandra Alland

Thanks to all the swell folks who came to the opening of A Spot of b)other (see previous entry for more info). It was a nice celebration despite the weather, and despite the fact that most of the lights are burned out in the gallery, the staff was rather cold, and our zine and display were labelled "explicit" at the last moment without consultation. No one would answer my questions about it at the time, but apparently this is because it has the word "fuck". I think "strong language" would have sufficed, and being told about it would have shown some basic respect... (not to mention I've seen the word fuck in GoMA before, and without a warning).

This kind of thing doesn't help much to eliminate the stereotype that all queer, trans and disabled work is pornographic (or to eliminate rumours of GoMA's insensitivity). When people hear the word "explicit", they think of sex. And this zine is sadly lacking in sex, quite frankly. As well as the label being culturally insensitive, people will be so darn confused! We will just have to make the next issue the porn issue.

Ah, well, onwards and upwards. I'm quite pleased with the show itself (the bother collective is stellar), and you can catch it for free until 21 February (if all the lights don't burn out before then...)

xo


 
Posted By Sandra Alland

Thanks to the lovely man on the bench, the even lovelier man with the cape, the stupidity of those who wish to hurt those I love, and the sweetest friends a person could have. Thanks also to A in London, who is always there. Sometimes there is strange justice, sometimes you survive something you think will destroy you, and sometimes gifts arrive from unexpected places.

I know this all sounds obtuse, dear reader, but in some of our lives there are things you can't say for legal reasons. The main lesson of 2008 and 2009? Poetry and metaphor have more uses than I imagined... So beware, forces of evil, because books are coming and you shall pay dearly, if only in your hearts.

In other news, Zorras brought the house down at GFest, a lovely queer festival in London. The Cochrane Theatre was a fantastic venue... it was especially fab to see Ariadna Battich's beautiful videos on the big big screen.

In still other news,my first major art show, b)other, opens this Wednesday (to the public on Thursday) at Glasgow Gallery of Modern Art. For info on b)other and the collective I've been collaborating with, read a wee article in The Skinny.

And then I must sleep until January, forgive me if I'm not often here. Sadly the end of this chapter has not yet arrived, we've just been given a moment's pause to clean our glasses... xox


 
Posted By Sandra Alland

Reminder:

Sandra Alland Open Studio, with members of the b)other collective
Thursday 5 November
Trongate 103 Visting Artist Studio
(located at 103 Trongate, Glasgow)
3-5pm and 6-9pm
Free!

(see previous post for more info)

In other news, Matthew Jebb has started a new radio show on Edinburgh's Fresh Air. Listen at 11pm here. Zorras song-poem thingamobobbies will be played!

xo


 
Posted By Sandra Alland

Friday the 30th was Screen Bandita's exciting The Eruption of Kilauea and Other Treasures! What a fantastic night of screenings of 16mm film projects with live music (and poems and stories) from Zorras, Raise Your Hem, Buffalo Buffalo Buffalo Buffalo Buffalo and Will Pickvance! Special thanks to Tim the Sound Guy. More info here!

In other news, as some of you know, I'm currently an artist-in-residence at GoMA and Trongate 103. In July I founded a collective called b)other, and together we've created a zine called A Spot of b)other (plus a lot of other things). See here for a preview in The Skinny!

An exhibition of our work (A Spot of b)other: LBGTI Deaf and Disabled Cultures) starts at GoMA on 25 November, but next week I have an Open Studio at Trongate 103 in Glasgow.

Sandra Alland Open Studio, with members of the b)other collective
Thursday 5 November
Trongate 103 Visting Artist Studio
(located at 103 Trongate, Glasgow)
3-5pm and 6-9pm
Free!

You can drop by, see the work we've been doing and chat with the artists. Also, we will have refreshments! Also, in the evening the rest of Trongate 103 (a fantastic new arts space with many galleries) will also have an open house. Please invite your friends and family!

b)other is Sandra Alland, Stuart Crawford, Nathan Gale, Y Josephine, Jennie Kermode, Rebeca Pla, Alison Smith, Penny Stenhouse and Kristiane Taylor.

You can also have a sneak-peak at my documentary about LGBTI immigrants to Scotland... featuring Nine, Janet, Y Josephine, Kika O and Rebeca Pla.

Other than that I'm out of commission for a while, maybe be back in late November...
xox


 
Posted By Sandra Alland

Last night I went to hear visual artist and activist Del Lagrace Volcano speak about gender, and intersex history, culture & art, at GoMA (a co-production with the Glasgay Festival). The talk was superb, and I urge you to check out Del's work. Sadly, as Del himself pointed out, the evening would have been better attended had GoMA not removed the information from its website in order to avoid controversy. I think it's downright shameful not to promote aspects of the Sh[OUT] LGBTI program -- that GoMA itself planned and commissioned -- because of worry about the reactions of tabloid newspapers and fundamentalists.

This is Del's general artist statement: "As a gender variant visual artist I access 'technologies of gender' in order to amplify rather than erase the hermaphroditic traces of my body. I name myself. A gender abolitionist. A part time gender terrorist. An intentional mutation and intersex by design, (as opposed to diagnosis), in order to distinguish my journey from the thousands of intersex individuals who have had their 'ambiguous' bodies mutilated and disfigured in a misguided attempt at 'normalization'. I believe in crossing the line as many times as it takes to build a bridge we can all walk across." It really is about time the world woke up and recognised that there are more than two genders out there, and (as Del pointed out), that most of us do not actually know what gender we belong to even in the supposedly scientific way (i.e. Have any of you had your chromosomes tested?)

In less important and revolutionary news, I finally took my friend N's advice and started watching True Blood, that American vampire tv show. I've always had a thing for vampire art (and also some less-than-brilliant vampire movies), so I thought I might vaguely dig it. But it's actually really exceptional for a tv show! The characters are interesting, and the idea of good and evil is complexly presented. Fascinating echoes of both black and gay liberation movements are constantly present because of the plot around vampires "coming out of the coffin" and demanding equal rights. Also vampires will screw anyone, they are so open-minded ;-) But I think perhaps what I like best (apart from the sex, blood and gore haha) is the fact that for once an American television show is not set in New York, Chicago or LA. It's set in the south, in Louisiana. It's refreshing to see the south depicted, and not just as a place full of rednecks (haha, rednecks! Vampires. Red necks. Ha.) Two of the main characters are a supersmart black woman and a supersexy out black gay man, and there are also several strong, intelligent white women (as well as ongoing comments about class). I think the show does much to counterract the ridiculous depiction of the south as being full of nothing but uneducated, right-wing fundamentalists.

Oh, and a quick update on ongoing entertainment on the Subcity reviews forum (see my last two posts)... quite fascinating that many of the nasty comments -- about Zorras being sadly unknown on the internet and deservedly linked with Spanish porn, about it not being racist to be bored by foreign languages, and about whether we "even know what misogyny means" -- have been mysteriously removed from the forum. And replaced by people writing very calmly (and supposedly objectively, ha) about how both Y and I are good on our own, but our fusion just doesn't "meld." And how accusations of racism are "unfair." Again, I don't think this is a superbly important debate (mainly because I don't think these guys are interested in listening), but I thought I'd let you know just for the record, so my earlier comments don't sound out of proportion.


 


 
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