We are artist duo Status Queer. Together we use spatial, relational and performative interventions to explore queer and trans experiences and weave new connections between people. Our work brings the most marginalised groups under the LGBTQ+ umbrella together to build community, claim space and shout from the rooftops.

We belong to a long history of norm-breakers. Like those who came before us, we will not bow to the pressures to ‘act normal’ or ‘blend in’ to gain the paper-thin acceptance of the ableist, racist, cis-het society around us. We stand on the shoulders of those who were not silent, so good luck sewing our mouths shut.

We are also co-founders of Gothenburg based NGO This is the Queer Space, read more under projects.

Sam Message

Sam (they/them) is a queer/trans artist and activist. They are a researcher, educator and curator specialised in intersectional queering practice. As a drag-performer they explore the bizarre, the subservice and the political. Other work includes inclusion & engagement consultation and panel moderation.

Kolbrún Inga Söring

Kolbrún Inga Söring is a genderqueer artist working in Gothenburg whose work spans several areas of artistic expression from performance, video work and site-specific installation to community cultivation and cultural production. Themes include body modification & politics of desire.

24 February 2024

SJUKT: BLAST FROM THE PAST

11:00 pm

GBG’s queerest party and sauciest community fundraiser SJUKT is BACK!  This time we’re begging for you to blow us away with your ultimate BLASTS FROM THE PAST.

COMPETITION: Share this post to your story with your blast from the past look ideas for a chance to win free tickets for you and a friend. Don’t forget to tag us so we can see! DEADLINE (Wednesday 7.FEB)

SJUKT is a queer / trans event. Well behaved straights allowed under supervision.⚡

❣️But REMEMBER queer is queer enough for us – express yourself how you want, dress up, dress down or dress all the way off – NO GATEKEEPING HERE❣️

***EVENT OVERVIEW***
LOCATION >>> TBA: Emailed to ticket holders on the night
Tickets AVAILABLE NOW: https://secure.tickster.com/sv/xkp2blv6mnj9bud/products
WHEN: 24.FEB @ 23:00-late
Economic support for priority groups available [read below]

DJs
23-1.30: TBA
1.30-4: Mavi Blue (he/him) * @mavi___blue
*******Mavi Blue is a Syrian DJ and recently producer based in Sweden, Gothenburg. With his deep-rooted love for drum and bass, house, techno and other electronic genres, Mavi seamlessly fuses these styles with his cultural background, creating an electrifying experience that transports listeners to a world where East meets West. Middle eastern instruments and Arabic vocals intertwine with pulsating beats creating an irresistible fusion of sound.*******

~~~

THEME: BLAST FROM THE PAST
Crimped hair, instagram hats, baywatch babes, Terminator T1000, your fave pokemon, or 18th century lesbian aristocrats (please someone come as Anne Lister). Personal treasure, or total icons we want you to blast us all the way off into a time long gone.

The present is a shit show so let’s live out a rose-tinted past in the best way, rubbing up against a room of sweaty queer and trans babes, babe-itos and babe-xes.

Dressing up NOT REQUIRED! Just showered with love, power and attention
As always fabulous looks get goodies on the door xoxoxo

❣️PRIORITY GROUPS❣️
If you cannot afford a ticket and belong to one of @wearestatusqueer ‘s priority groups send us a message and we’ve got your back
You belong to one of their priority groups if you are LGBTQ+ *and* racialised, living with a disability, newly arrived, working class/economically precarious or a binary/non-binary trans person.

All funds raised go to Status Queer’s work in the community.

There are no upcoming events scheduled at the moment.

Previous Events

Dec 13 2023

Together Tools @ Världskulturmuseet

5:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Join us for our final event of the year! On this coming Wednesday 13.December Världskulturmuseet opens a

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Join us for our final event of the year!

On this coming Wednesday 13.December Världskulturmuseet opens a part of their exhibition Existence with a special afterwork with lots of exciting happenings.

We’ve been invited to host a drop-in workshop where we’ll be making together with all of you lovely people to explore memories of those near and dear and those far and passed-away. Throughout, we’ll be using our ‘Together Tools’ –  tools for making that need many hands at once to use. Don’t worry, no artistic experience or talent necessary!

*** ESSENTIAL INFO ***
⏰17:00-20:00
SQ WORKSHOP 17:00-20:00
WHEN Wednesday 13.Dec
WHERE Världskulturmuseet, Södra vägen 54, Göteborg
TICKETS 140 kr (free entry for under 19 year olds)

So come on down, get stuck in and explore the exciting program Världskulturmuseet has to offer.

Södra vägen 54, Göteborg
Dec 07 2023

Dec 08 2023

CULT OF SIN

7:30 pm - 11:30 pm

DOUBLE TROUBLE: Your favourite Gothenburg-based radical-queer drag show is back with not one but TWO SHOWS

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DOUBLE TROUBLE: Your favourite Gothenburg-based radical-queer drag show is back with not one but TWO SHOWS this December. Are you ready to be served deliciously bizarre, succulently political and totally fabulous performance? Good, because we’re here, we’re queer and we’re got fucking something to say.

Divas, kings, beasts, creatures, aliens and personified inanimate objects: We’ve. Got. It. All.
So open up, it’s time for another a mouthful of dirty radical drag.

GET YOUR TICKETS HERE

——-

DATES: 7 & 8.Dec
WHERE: Sent to ticket holds on night (MAJORNA)
TIME: 19.30 – Doors open, get your drinks and grab your seatts!
SHOW TIME: 20-21.30 Drag show
MUSIC: 21.30-11.30 <3 men såklart det blir dansgolv darling <3: good vibes and good beats with ***DJ @(jacob)***

——-

THEME: Sin
Whether you’re a saint, a sinner or a martyr, we’ve all danced with the devil at some point. From shame to power, what should be a sin and who is the most holy. Prepare

LINE-UP
CULT has been manifesting a new generation of saints, sinners and martyrs through Status Queer’s drag school Initations and we’re bursting at the seams with fresh new blood and well gbg-top talent alike. Not to mention our old CULT faithfuls from throughout the ages.

Keep you’re eyes peeled for all the performer announcements coming your way!

NIGHT ONE: Sin Can Be Deadly
TBAx7

NIGHT TWO: Sin Can Set You Free
TBAx7

HOST:
As usual its our dear leader Meatling AKA Köttungen [@sammessage] will take sweet soft care of you all night baby.

❣️PRIORITY GROUPS❣️
If you cannot afford a ticket and belong to one of @wearestatusqueer ‘s we’ve got you, with our PRIORITY GROUP TICKETS – send us a message to find out more.

This event is support by Kultur Ungdom, ABF Göteborg and Västra Götalands Regionen.

Nov 24 2023

SJUKT: Fever Dreams

11:00 pm - 11:00 pm

GBG’s queerest party and sauciest community fundraiser SJUKT is BACK!!!! And this time we’re getting extra

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GBG’s queerest party and sauciest community fundraiser SJUKT is BACK!!!! And this time we’re getting extra twisted. Whether it’s the strangest wet dream you’ve ever had or your sleep paralysis nightmare fuel – show us *your* FEVER DREAM. 

⚡SJUKT is a queer / trans event. Well behaved straights allowed under supervision.⚡
❣️But REMEMBER queer is queer enough for us – express yourself how you want – NO GATEKEEPING HERE❣️
***EVENT OVERVIEW***
+ TBA: Emailed to ticket holders on the night
+ Tickets AVAILABLE NOW
+ 24.NOV @ 23:00-late
+ Economic support for priority groups available [read below]

 

***DJs***
23-1.30:

***JACOB (he/him) * @jaco.bin***
”there is nothing more heavenly than a night where almost every songs brings out a sing-along, where everyone knows every word to every song, my musical archives are filled to the brim with soul, disco, garage, house & dance-pop… prepare for everything from 70’s disco, 80’s dance-pop, 90’s house to all the anthems from our fave pop divas, Kylie, Donna, Beyoncé, Nicki, Madonna, Aretha, Diana, Whitney, Gaga, etc. and to play the songs that you didn’t know you needed in your life… see you on the dancefloor xoxo”

1.30-4:

***OSC~ (any pronoun) * @osc________ ***
”the vibe will tell where waves will flow
yet one spell or three I know
SASS
UNITZ
~ rainbow dust ~
Namaste c you in the astral realm of fever dreams
xoxo OSC~”

~~~

***THEME: FEVER DREAMS***
Hyper real NPC streamers doing cher numbers with 4 over enthusiastic puppets. Giant tapioca pimple popping on enormous gummy bears. Egg pealing, sad beige children and our minister for enterprise and energy saying on record ‘just because you’re gay, theres no need to be a slut’ its hard to know whats real life and whats a total feaver dream these days.

So let your unhinged underside hang out and give birth to the totally bizarre. Its time to live your best dululu life hun xoxo

—> Dressing up NOT REQUIRED! Just showered with love, power and attention
—> as always fabulous looks get goodies on the door xoxoxo

❣️PRIORITY GROUPS❣️
If you cannot afford a ticket and belong to one of our priority groups <3 we’ve got you, SIGN UP HERE FOR A PRIO TICKET.

You belong to one of their priority groups if you are LGBTQ+ *and* racialised, living with a disability, newly arrived, working class/economically precarious or a binary/non-binary trans person.

All funds raised go to Status Queer’s work in the community.

Nov 22 2023

Rebel Drawing Youth @ Linnéstadens bibliotek

4:30 pm - 6:30 pm

Are you aged 13-18 Then listen up: whether your LGBTQ+ or not, we have got THE playful

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Are you aged 13-18 Then listen up: whether your LGBTQ+ or not, we have got THE playful queer literary-based co-making & exploration session for you! (very specific but trust us its not one to miss)

***ESSENTIAL INFO***
– Linnéstadens bibliotek, Första Långgatan 28 A, 413 27 Göteborg
– Wednesday 22.November
– 16:30-18:30
– FREE ENTRY – Sign up REQUIRED – SIGN UP HERE
– Main language English, support in Swedish as required

— Confirmation emails sent 2 days before the workshop —

***THE DETAILS***
We’re coming to Linnéstadens bibliotek because we’ve got something to say: screw the idea that we “can’t draw” or that ‘“we’re not good enough’ we all deserve to make, to collaborate and to explore. This place is for us too, so let’s get our hands dirty, get stuck into some books and have some fun!

In this edition of Rebel Drawing we’ll be exploring different literary worlds by getting creative with our Together Tools – tools for making that need many hands at the same time to operate. Together we’ll be exploring our memories and connections to this city, each other and our favourite literary gems. 

Yes we will be playing, but don’t worry we take play very seriously. So come down and let’s get stuck into some bizarre, meaningful and stimulating making.

Once again for those in the back: No drawing experience, skill or talent necessary – this isn’t like drawing as you know it.

We won’t be getting too messy but we’ll be using ink so don’t wear anything too precious

***PRIORITY GROUPS***
As always priority groups are first in line to get workshop places. Read more about our priority groups on our website

This workshop is produced for Linnéstadens bibliotek by Status Queer. Status Queer is Gothenburg-based artist duo — Kolbrún Inga Söring and Sam Message — who use art and culture to build a more sustainable, inclusive and supportive LGBTQ+ community.

Första Långgatan 28 A, 413 27 Göteborg
Nov 09 2023

We Were There: Sjöfartsmuseet Akvariet

5:45 pm - 8:00 pm

We Were There  is back with another workshop using play and making to insert us into the

Read More

We Were There  is back with another workshop using play and making to insert us into the story of who we are and where we come from. This time we’ll be getting stuck in with Status Queer’s Together Tools to plot our course to a queer utopia far beyond the horizon.

~~ ESSENTIAL INFO ~~

  • 17:30-19:45, 9.Nov
  • Meet at the entrance of Sjöfartsmuseet Akvariet
  • Language: English (stöd på svenska möljigt)
  • Price: Entry to museum required / free for students – economic support for our priority groups [see our website for more]
  • No talent necessary. We’re here to find ways to play together. No-one gets to tell us what’s right or wrong, good or “bad”.

 

^^^^^^

SIGN UP REQUIRED sign up form available here
Workshop places limited with confirmation sent Monday Nov.6

^^^^^^

~~ THE SERIES ~~
We queer and trans people come from a long line of boundary-crossers, norm-breakers and resistors. But our heritage is constantly being written and rewritten. What survives has been filtered by all of the oppressive -isms which continue to plague our society today. 

Where we come from, how we got here and who came before us are key questions in figuring out who we are, and who we are not, right now in the present day. That’s why heritage matters.

~~ THIS WORKSHOP ~~
For centuries non-normative people have taken to the sea searching for a better future. Although traces of these stories still exist – something we’ll explore in Sjöfartsmuseet’s collection – much of this history lies in the thick mists of time. In this workshop we’ll mapping the way to a fantasy land built by us, for us.

We’ll be using our experiences as queer and trans people as well Status Qeer’s Together Tools – tools for making that need many hands at once to operate – to imagine what this mysterious rumoured paradise might look like.

We Were There is a project by Status Queer – A Gothenburg-based initative using art and culture to build a more diverse, inclusive and sustainable LGBTQ+ community.

Karl Johansgatan 1-3, 414 59 Göteborg
Oct 11 2023

PEEK! Live at GIBCA

6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

We’re sick of it. We’re sick of the snobbery and the wankery oozing our of art

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We’re sick of it. We’re sick of the snobbery and the wankery oozing our of art museums and galleries — and luckily we’re not the only ones. That’s why some of the good one’s have asked us to come shake it up with our performative tour PEEK! Live. So get ready to see our drag characters guide you through GIBCA’s exhibition ‘forms of the surrounding futures’ at Röda Sten Konsthall with a fresh pair of freaky eyes.

But it’s not just us, we’re getting you involved too. These exhibitions are for ALL of us, not for the selected few — so let’s get together and be just a little inappropriate in the art space.

***ESSENTIAL INFO***
Röda Sten Konsthall, Röda Sten 1
Wednesday 11.October
18:00-19:00
FREE ENTRY – no sign up required

***MORE INFO***
It’s no secret that most art spaces are highly inaccessible. The more marginalised you are, the less likely you are to be able to access the cultural spaces we are all supposed to be stakeholders in. But these spaces are supposed to be for all of us. Things as they are cannot continue, that’s why we’re here to make some noise. So come along as  Sam Message (@meatlingthemeatbaby) and Kolbrún Inga Söring (@iamsinfluencer) guide you through a new way of interrupting the gallery. 

During their workshop Rebel Drawing earlier in the programme, we’re working with local queer and trans people to collectively produce text, sound and image. For this edition of PEEK! Live, we’re going to translate and recombobulate these fragments into a gender-bending, rule-breaking and boundary-crossing challenge to the norms of the gallery space.

***PEEK! LIVE***
PEEK! Live is a part of Status Queer’s project PEEK! where we capture reactions to our outrageous drag characters in public spaces in collaboration with photographer Elsa Groener.

This performative tour is produced for GIBCA in collaboration with ABF [ @abfgoteborg ]

Röda Sten 1, 414 51 Göteborg
Sep 30 2023

Status Queer: Rebel Drawing @ GIBCA

1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Fuck the idea that we ‘can’t draw’ or that ‘’we’re not good enough’, we all deserve

Read More

Fuck the idea that we ‘can’t draw’ or that ‘’we’re not good enough’, we all deserve to make, to collaborate and to explore. This place is for us too, so let’s get our hands dirty and have some fun. 

In this edition of Rebel Drawing we’ll  be getting creative with our Together Tools – tools for making that need many hands at the same time to operate – to play with our memories, each other and GIBCA’s exhibition for Röda Sten Konsthall ‘forms of the surrounding futures’.

***ESSENTIAL INFO***
Röda Sten Konsthall, Röda Sten 1
Saturday 30.Sept
13:00-16:00
FREE ENTRY – Sign up REQUIRED via form: https://forms.gle/nBCRJhasyt9eaVG6A ⚡️⚡️

— Confirmation emails sent 2 days before the workshop —

***THE DETAILS***
Our cultural institutions do not represent us, not ALL of us. That’s why we’re here with this workshop – to make our marks there too. In this workshop we’ll be using our ‘Together Tools’ to make large scale artworks. Together, we’ll dig into what it means to be queer and trans people in this city and into our ideas about community, possible futures and utopias. We’ll also be exploring and responding to the exhibition ‘forms of the surrounding futures’ – but on *our* terms.

Yes we will be playing, but don’t worry we take play very seriously. So come down and let’s get stuck into some bizarre, meaningful and stimulating making.

Once again for those in the back: No drawing experience, skill or talent necessary – this isn’t like drawing as you know it.

We won’t be getting too messy but we’ll be using ink so don’t wear anything too precious

***PRIORITY GROUPS***

<3 As always priority groups are first in line to get workshop places. Read more about our priority groups on our website.

This workshop is produced for GIBCA in collaboration with ABF.

Röda Sten 1, 414 51 Göteborg
Sep 26 2023

OPEN OUT presents QUEER CINEMA : TROMSÖ

7:00 pm

In this debut of Open Out's new Queer Cinema they invited Flat Earth Film Festival and

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In this debut of Open Out‘s new Queer Cinema they invited Flat Earth Film Festival and SAQMI to collaborate on an event around Queer Moving Image in the Nordics. FEFF @flatearthcinema who are based in Seyðisfjörður and SAQMI are both ground-breaking organisations in their own right when it comes to moving images, with very different approaches. This will be a night you do not want to miss! The screening program features a variety of multiply marginalised voices around the Nordic region and the United States, and does in that way make visible and readily available experiences that often do not reach the mainstream, but that have an immense value to our communities and society at large. With this new addition to the festival, Open Out Cinema hopes to bring a sense of community and awareness of queer existence across the vast Nordic regions, and with that we hope to contribute to broadening the general understanding of what Nordic perspectives might look like.

In addition Status Queer will join Open Out the second time around to kick off the event with their relational exercises around the festival’s theme CURRENTS. Status Queer will also be there, to answer any questions after the screening. Let’s come, cry, celebrate, take over and have a blast together <3 Everyone is invited to continue the night together with us at the Verdensteatret Bar after the screening.

The Program

1. Queering Sápmi – Sami stories beyond the norm
 Film makers: Sara Lindquist(they/them) and Elfrida Bergman(she/her)

2. Blossom
Film makers: Matti Arbiv(he/him) & Tekla Andersson(she/her)

3. The fourth Element
Film maker: Futuro berg(he/him) ft. Poet Veronica Odetunde(she/her)

4. Eana diehtá
Film makers: Máret Ásllat Ivvár Ovllá Nilla Ritni, Ritni Pieski(he/they); Wanda Holopainen(they/them) and Guhtur-Niillasa Sire Nanna Pessi, Pessi Jouste(they/them)

5. Did they send me daughters when I asked for sons?
Film makers: Wren Krisztin, Grace Krisztin & Theresa Hoffer 

6. brev till mig själv eller transvården eller vita personer
ENGLISH TITLE:
a letter to myself or the gender clinic or white people
Film maker:  Jon Ely Xiuming Aagaard Gao

7. Chavo
Film maker: Alecio Araci (he/him)

Storgata 93, 9008 Tromsö
Sep 08 2023

Sep 09 2023

CULT OF THE EXTRATERRESTRIALS

9:30 pm

DRAG SHOW INCOMING!! On your knees, meat machine. Open your mouth. Get ready to be sucked deep

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DRAG SHOW INCOMING!!
On your knees, meat machine. Open your mouth. Get ready to be sucked deep into our tractor beam. All- the- way- to- the- oth-er- s-i- -d- – -e- – – – /¤*~§*****

Join us for our latest explosive out-of-this-world drag show ‘CULT of the extraterrestrials’.

ESSENTIAL INFO
In gbg for 2 nights!
✨September 8 @ 21.30
✨September.9 @ 22.30
Kvartersscenen 2Lång
✨TICKETS AVAILABLE NOW

Were expecting to sell out so get these hot cakes whilst you still can!!

THE SHOW
In this juicy mouthful of radical queer culture❤️‍, Gothenburg’s loudest❤️, sauciest❤️‍, and most sacrilegious drag collective.

But there’s more!! CULT is joined by a supernaturally special guest all the way from Lilla londons stora bror- the beating blue heart of London’s alien underground herself: ❤️Bev❤️

Expect the bizarre, the naughty and the comic with this taste of a drag gbg doesn’t get to see.

ABOUT CULT
CULT is a Status Queer initiative. 

All CULT members are a product of Status Queer’s drag school THE INITIATION. If you long to get into drag, sign up is coming soon! See our website or insta for all the details!

ECONOMIC SUPPORT
As always, free tickets for ❤️ marginalised LGBTQ+ community members available as needed. 

Our priority groups:
✨Binary & nonbinary trans people
✨Newly arrived people
✨Racialised people
✨Working class / economically precarious
✨People with disabilities 

Contact us if you belong to one of these groups and cannot afford a ticket, we’ve got your back no questions asked.

Andra Långgatan 30, Gothenburg
Jul 22 2023

SJUKT: Bimbo Revolution

11:00 pm

Calling all bimbos, himbos and thembos: the time has come! Glisten those bodies with glitter, smother

Read More

Calling all bimbos, himbos and thembos: the time has come! Glisten those bodies with glitter, smother those lips in gloss and grab your rhinestones, because SJUKT is back with a vengeance.

SJUKT is a queer / trans event. Well behaved straights allowed under supervision.

EVENT OVERVIEW
Location: Gothenburg, exact location released to ticket holders on the night
Tickets AVAILABLE NOW : https://secure.tickster.com/705k7xcugrpukgt
22.July @ 23:00-late
Economic support for priority groups available [read below]

DJs
23-1.30: TBA
1.30-4: TBA

~~~

THE JUICY DETAILS

Never ending hyperproductive world-consuming war-stoking wage-slave capitalism is our poison. But don’t worry we’ve got the antidote: ✨Collective Bimbofication✨

Indulgence. Self-care. Desire. Community.

The Bimbo, the Bimboi and the spectrum that lies betwixt exists purely for the pursuit of joy. In these times our joy – queer joy, trans joy – is an act of resistance. So let’s paint the town pink and bathe in bimbo pleasure paradise for just one night.

Don’t forget: we control the gaze, we are not subject to it. 

⚡ As always SJUKT is **For us by us bby**

~~~

THEME: BIMBOS HIMBOS & THEMBOS

All bimbos throughout space and time welcome:

+ All Dolly Partons, Elle Woods and Mae Wests
+ Legal experts and radical leftists
+ Glorious goths and precious punks
+ Nice naughties lovers (00-talet for all you swedes) and naughty 90s nightmares
+ Cyborgs and Witches, washerwomen and gentlemen
+ Whatever your himbo heart desires.

Let loose, shake it out and be the bimbo you want to see in the world.

Fabulous looks get goodies on the door xoxoxo
Dressing up NOT REQUIRED! Just showered with love, power and attention

~~~

PRIORITY GROUPS

⚡If you cannot afford a ticket and belong to one of @wearestatusqueer ‘s priority groups then message them and they’ll make sure you can come.

⚡You belong to one of their priority groups if you are LGBTQ+ *and* racialised, living with a disability, newly arrived, working class/economically precarious or a binary/non-binary trans person.

Apr 19 2023

WE WERE THERE: Göteborgs konstmuseum

4:45 pm - 7:00 pm

We Were There is back with another workshop using play and making to insert us into

Read More

We Were There is back with another workshop using play and making to insert us into the story of who we are and where we come from as a people. This time we’ll be using stories, fictions and alternate histories to reclaim our lost histories. 

WE WERE THERE
+ 16:45-19:00, 19. April
+ Entrance of Konstmuseet
+ English (Stöd på svenska vid behov)
+ The workshop is free [ you do not have to pay admission to the museum to participate]
+ ☝No talent necessary. We’re here to find ways to play together, no-one gets to tell us what’s right or wrong, good or “bad” 

SIGN UP NOW

~~ THE SERIES ~~
We queer and trans people come from a long line of ⚡️boundary-crossers, norm-breakers and resisters⚡. But our heritage is constantly being ✏️written and rewritten✏️. What survives has been filtered by all of the oppressive -isms which continue to plague our society today. 

Where we come from, how we got here and who came before us are key questions in figuring out who we are, and who we are not, right now in the present day. That’s why heritage matters.

~~ THIS WORKSHOP ~~
In this workshop at Konstmuseet, we’re going to be taking matters into our own hands, challenging official timelines with our own stories. Using a variety of playful writing and collective storytelling methods to create an alternate history. 

After the workshop our tales will be made publicly available through a audioguide, to give Gothenburgers the taste of a queer past they missed and the queer future they need.

Sign up for the workshop via the sign up form here.
Workshop participants will need to pay for entry to the museum.
Status Queer can offer economic support for their priority groups – read more about here.

This workshop will be held in predominantly English, but we will support Swedish speakers and you are very welcome to participate in Swedish!

We Were There is a collaboration between Status Queer and Gothenburg’s museums including Göteborgs Stadsmuseum and Göteborgs Konstmuseum.

 

Götaplatsen 6, 412 56 Göteborg
Mar 04 2023

Mar 05 2023

SJUKT x NOT YOUR HABIBI : Alter ego

11:00 pm - 4:00 am

We’re back! Club kids, bare nips and bouncing tits. For our extra special sweaty return we’ve

Read More

We’re back! Club kids, bare nips and bouncing tits. For our extra special sweaty return we’ve teamed up with the fucking fantastically fabulous NOT YOUR HABIBI @notyourhabibi.se.

GET YOUR TICKETS HERE 

This SJUKT x NOT YOUR HABIBI collab is also bringing you an exhibition by Not Your Habibi and @wearestatusqueer. Keep your eyes peeled for more information coming soon <3 

Not Your Habibi is a SWANA queer safe space founded with the main focus of celebrating the duality of our queer identities and cultural backgrounds. We have collectively experienced the lack of representation in queer spaces in Sweden and the underwhelming opportunities presented to queer margnalized artists. Our vision is to create a safe space as well as housing and honouring all creative expressions by queer artists from the SWANA region.

This event features only queer SWANA talent.

~~~

THE EVENT
LOCATION: Released on the night
TICKETS: AVAILABLE NOW
WHEN: 4.March @ 23:00-late
❗️Economic support for priority groups available [read below]

DJs
23-12: Mavi
12-02: Rasuul
02-04: Noise Diva

~~~

THE DETAILS
Calling all disgusting demons, cyber-pussies and naughty nibbling nuns. EMERGENCY ON THE DANCEFLOOR. So this one goes out to all you heavenly hoes, alien asseaters and sweaty superheros too.

There’s Queer/transphobic wankery afoot and we need to shake it, spin it and dip it the fuck out.

It’s time to take back the night and wrap ourselves in another evening of sweet, spicy and saucy queer love. 

**For us by us bby**
This is a queer / trans party. Well behaved straights allowed.

~~~

THEME: ALTER EGOS
Are you a voluptuous villain
Do chains and whips excite you
R u gunna come as a mouse [duh]
Super queero Domestic goddess? Karl Marx (but even sexier     ahh)
Whatever your alter ego is we wanna see you in your full glory[-]

Fabulous looks get goodies on the door xoxoxo

Dressing up NOT REQUIRED! Just showered with love, power and attention 

~~~

PRIORITY GROUPS
⚡ If you cannot afford a ticket and belong to one of @wearestatusqueer ‘s priority groups then message them and they’ll make sure you can come.
⚡ You belong to one of our priority groups if you LGBTQ+ *and* racialised, living with a disability, newly arrived, working class/economically precarious or a binary/non-binary trans person. 

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CULT

What is CULT?

CULT is our award winning drag collective where drag kings, queens, cretins and creatures get on stage to scream, shout and let it all hang out. Whether it’s for a packed city square or a filthy back alley stage, CULT is always unapologetically political, outrageous and entertaining.

Why do we need CULT?
Drag As A Medium

Drag is a powerful medium. It is electrifying, engaging and gets an audience screaming and shouting. Done right, it’s a loud and proud expression of queer and trans joy which reaches across the broad spectrum of the LGBTQ+ community. 

Drawing on drag’s long history of subversion and boundary crossing, we subscribe to the school of thought that drag should be funny and playful, outrageous and loud but also fiercely political and deeply empowering. In our collective we work together to sharpen our perspectives, bring into being our political voice and practice shouting it out at the top of our lungs.

Cult of the Climate Crisis 2022, Credit: Felicia Sörensen
A Drag Family

With every round of our drag free-school INITIATIONS we welcome more members to our CULT. Together we’re building the kind of drag scene we need in this community: one that gives space, voice and power to our community. CULT is a collective where we do our best to nurture, sharpen and support each other. With every show we invite you in to play, to participate and to scream your hearts out. The doors of this absurd CULT madness is wide open, so come in. We don’t always bite.

Cult of Sin 2023, image: Felicia Sörensen
Shows

Whether we’re hosting our own show or being featured in festivals or other events, we want our audience to feel like they’ve joined a cult. We’ll get you worshipping, chanting and praying in the service of your newly found family

Every show sews together comedy with dance, lip sync, live singing, parody, caricature and kink to address a theme. We use these themes to probe issues that are important to us and our community. See our shows tab for more about what we’ve been doing over the past 2 years.

COMING UP!

CULT ot the Alien Invaders
Alien mini-tour part 3: Manchester – Derby Brewery Arms 2024

Otherworlds: CULT Invaders
Alien mini-tour part 2: London – The Divine 2024
She’s been our special guest, now it’s our turn to be truly special. In the second part of our mini-tour we’re hitting East London’s The Divine to join Bev for her show Otherworlds. It’ll be a show like any other: queer feminist burlesque, cow titties that stretch to the floor, latex demon hoods and, of course, piss.

CULT of the Alien Invaders
Alien mini-tour part 1: Reykjavik – Gaukurinn, Reykjavik Fringe 2024
Watch out Iceland, aliens incoming! For the first part of our mini-tour we’re storming the world’s wettest rock (probably) with a blast of colour, filth and queer feminist propaganda. Our cult just gets bigger and bigger, and where better to find a flock than in the literal land of sheep.

For our returning special guests, of course no-one does Alien better than the queen of bloo, Bev!

PREVIOUS SHOWS

CULT  of Sin
Gothenburg – Kajskjul 46
We manifested a new generation of saints, sinners and martyrs through another round of our drag free-school INITIATIONS 2.0. After weeks of indoctrination and tens of hours of preparing characters, looks, concepts and performances we birthed 10 new drag artists onto the stage – so many that we couldn’t fit them into just 1 evening.

The history of queer and sin have been woven together throughout christianity’s grip on our world. But what is sin, who decides and who in the end is really a sinner? 

Night #1: Sin Can Set You Free
Sin can be being yourself. Are you a big bushy-bearded blacksmith with a penchant for sissy panties? Or a mischievous artwork hanging in the museum begging to be vandalised? Sin doesn’t always lead us to places we expect, but when we embrace it oh it can feel so sooo good.

Night #2: Sin Can Be Deadly
What to take away from tonight? Don’t look too long, or get too close, things aren’t what they might seem to be. But perhaps you’ll be learning a lesson you need to learn – afterall is it a sin to punish a sinner? 

Featured from the evening: when the Doll of Patriarchy made its way out onto the dancefloor and in a Julius Caesar moment of madness he was systematically brutalised by queer after queer with Super Bimbo’s base ball bat. Until that is, the bat broke.

CULT: Teaser
Gothenburg – Skeppet, DocLounge x SAQMI 2023
In collaboration with DocLounge and the Swedish Archive of Queer Moving Images we put on a jam-packed evening of film, performance and discussion exploring queer life and lives in the underground, from Gothenburg to Medellín. CULT: Teaser gave a wider audience a taste, albeit a rather full mouthful, of what we’re up to in queer GBG. And I mean, who can resist an ode to satisfyers in such a grand old church under the eyes of the biggest of all daddies?

The Cult of the Extraterrestreals (2023)
Gothenburg –  2Lång, Gothenburg Fringe Festival 2023
At Gothenburg Fringe Festival 2023 we brought the city a juicy mouthful of radical queer culture. Coming down from our roost far in the sky above we used our alien bodies to explore our trans experiences alongside our special guest all the way from the UK – the one and only true bloo alien, Bev!

Big thank you again to fringe and to all of you who voted for the Audience Choice Award – that’s right, we’re award winning, baby! (oh and don’t forget, also award-nominated! For the Hype Award). Goal for next year: snatch 2 trophies.

The Cult of the Climate Crisis (2022)
Gothenburg – Kungsportsplatsen, Climate Live 2022

There is no climate justice without class justice. But let us tell you, there isn’t anything that tastes quite as sweet as having thousands of people chanting ‘eat the rich’ with you, well other than the delicious taste of eating the rich for real of course. Thanks to Climate Live Gothenburg and activists from Friday’s for Future for a stage as big as our ambitions.

Cult of Consumption (2022)
Gothenburg, Kolgruvan 2022 & at Newcomers: Beyond Borders, Frilagret 2022
Turns out if you put a room full of queers together and ask them to make performances about consumption, everything is about food, fucking or fucking food. Following our first round of INITIATIONS 1.0 we launched our collective by getting messy, getting naughty, letting it all out. Packed to the rafters, Kolgruvan was vibrating with radical queer and trans joy. This was the first, and after that experience it could absolutely not be the last.

Newcomers Göteborg: Beyond Borders
After the success of our debut, we were invited to perform at Newcomers Göteborg’s event Beyond Borders to celebrate this amazing project for LGBTQ+ newcomers, asylum seekers and refugees.

FOUNDERS

Meatling the Meatbaby: Sam Message (they/them)
Meatling’s performances use the bizarre, the comedic and the shocking. From dictatorial speeches to fingering felt pussies to completion, the only thing you know to expect is you’re in for a proper show. In their work they seek to bring together a broad coalition in the community and use the stage to put a critical lens on gender, norms and systems of oppressions. Even though they engage with heavy themes, their vibrant performances always focus queer and trans joy as a way to process, reclaim and build community.

INITIATIONS 1.0

Doctor STYX Hexy: Sasha (they/he)
Sasha’s work playfully experiments with the transphobic ideas of body mutilation and depravity, and takes pride in the monstrosity our transphobic society has painted them to be. Doctor Hexy – the nurse, the surgeon and the doctor is someone who cares but who also inflicts pain – becomes a symbol of unfiltered rage, pride, and defiance: breaking free at all costs.

INITIATIONS 2.0

Don Patrik-Arky: Josée (She/Her)
Josée’s drag performances are a satirical critique of patriarchal institutions as well as everyday patriarchy. All aspects of her performances are inspired by personal experiences of patriarchal environments that surrounded her. Her drag character embodies patriarchy in its purest form. Josée is Canadian, but she’s been living abroad for many years, including Shanghai, China, which is where her drag journey began.

Edgar Allan Hoe: Moa (They/them)
Taking inspiration from history, Moa’s work revolves around finding joy, humour and queerness in past decades. They challenge our preconceptions about historical masculinity and show us their ideas of a queer past. Edgar Allan Hoe throws the audience between feelings of desire and shame, exploring the self beyond what society deems acceptable.

Leon QueerAF: Leon (they/them)
Leon takes inspiration from geek culture, fantasy and sci-fi in their performances. Their drag is born from cosplay and that strongly influences their performances, which are short, intense and full of emotions. One of Leon’s drag characters, Anvil Lavigne, is one example of how Leon uses their interests, in this case Dungeons & Dragons, to portray gender roles, expression and identity.

Sirius van der Lism: Gabriel Eva (he/they)
Escaping from the realm of a static painting, Sirius van der Lism is an exploration of the meaning of heritage and the power communities can have to recontextualize and reinterpret it. While using art conservation as a metaphor for their queer experience, Sirius plays with the humorous and unsettling to reclaim and distort harmful rhetoric surrounding trans people.

Sinfluencer: Kolbrún Inga Söring (they/them)
Inga’s work centres around politics of desire, body modification, social media and critical reflection on socio-cultural norms and practices. Performance here becomes an ideal medium where through auto-theoretical writing centres their own body as opposition, where they are a continuous subject of gaze, opinions and of a resistance to boundary breaking individuals such as themselves.
Through their drag character Sinfluencer, Inga explores the often problematic performative aspect of online advocacy and engagement.

Glen the Alien: Stian Temdahl Sundström (they/them)
Stian’s performances push and probe boundaries of gender, gender expression and societal norms through characters of their own creation. Currently, their practice uses queer performance art to challenge audiences to explore political and societal issues such as climate change, over consumption and mental health issues as well as lgbtqia+ & transgender rights.


FILTHY Q: Leo Glitter (they/him)
Leo has named their primary performance character FILTHY Q, for all the times they’ve been called filthy and disgusting as a bullied kid, teenager and queer adult. They want to reclaim ‘filthy’ as we did with ‘queer’. With FILTHY Q, they extend the meaning of disgusting to both themselves and to others to fabricate a new definition which encompasses their own beautiful way of living and viewing the world. Their message with their performances?:  ”yes, I’m one of those fat, filthy gay trans queers and so what?”

Donna Touchme: Elsa (they/them)
Elsa works with the fine line between sexualization and praise, and how we can steer the observer’s gaze. Their performances also flirt with the idea of coming out and what types of shifts happen within oneself that contrast the outside perspective.

Kassandra Dramatik: Theo (he/she)
Born sometime between Greece’s peak economic prosperity of the early 2000s and the recession-era pop music of the early 2010s, Kassandra serves as a commentary on conservative societal norms and crumbled aspirations for a better future under capitalism. She contrasts escapism with evocative doses of reality to expose the power relations that make up the fabric of our daily lives. 

Sir Harvey Bang Bang: Karolina (she/her)
Karolina’s art spans from the tantalising world of Burlesque to the sizzling stage of Drag. Her performances challenges the definition of femininity and radiate a fierce energy, blending anger, humour, and a raw, unapologetic confidence. Her character Sir Harvey Bang Bang is born from the depths of masculinity. He’s a man who craves power, attention, and all things revolting. He’s the type of guy you can’t take your eyes off of from afar, but up close, you’ll be quaking in your boots.

Collaborating performers
BEV: Intergalactic Queen of The Planet Bloo (they/them)
Sindre “Sugar/Paloma” (they/he) 
The Receivers: Sara Lindquist(they/them) & Tove Pils (they/them)

Media and tech
Elsa Groener(she/her) : Photography
Sára Bartošová(she/her): Film
Isabel Taube(she/they): Sound design
Gustav Lejelind(he/him): Sound technician
Lovisa Mattisson(she/her): Sound technician
NZone: Technical equipment
ABF : Technical equipment

Space
Kolgruvan
Newcomers
Climate Live
Kvartersscenen 2lång
Skjul Fyra Sex

Festivals
Fringe Festival Gothenburg

INITIATIONS

What is Initiations?

INITIATIONS is a drag free-school where participants meet over a number of weeks to develop their first drag performance, from character to concept, look to performance. Graduates from the free-school are then initiated into our drag collective CULT. Our goal is to create a thriving scene of kings, queens & creatures here to engage and invigorate the community we want to see in this city.

Why do we need Initiations?
Drag As A Medium

Drag is a powerful medium. It is electrifying, engaging and gets an audience screaming and shouting. Done right, it’s a loud and proud expression of queer and trans joy which reaches across the broad spectrum of the LGBTQ+ community. 

Drawing on drag’s long history of subversion and boundary crossing, we subscribe to the school of thought that drag should be funny and playful, outrageous and loud but also fiercely political and deeply empowering. With the support of tools developed by Status Queer, Initiations uses the free-school format to encourage peer-to-peer learning to get us to explore ourselves personally and politically. Together we work to sharpen our perspectives, bring into being our political voice and practice shouting it out at the top of our lungs.

Initiations 1.0, 2022 – image: Sara Lindquist
Empowering New Artistic Voices

Initiations seeks to empower a new generation of artistic voices to take to the stage and get their message out with the eyes and the ears of the community on them. As with all our work, initiations prioritises the inclusion of those most marginalised in our community – which of course also intersects with those who have had least access to traditional pathways into the world of art and culture. Read more about our accessibility and inclusion strategies here.

INITATIONS 1.0 & 2.0
Initiations 2.0, 2023 – photo credit: Sára Bartošová

INITIATIONS takes the form of a 9 week course starting at the very beginning: what do you want to say as a performer. Together, we work through making a character, learning how to do transformative make up, conceptualising a performance and learning how to perform it. In the course we do our best to make sure participants have everything they need to get up on stage and give it their all, whether that’s wigs, make up, outfits – we don’t always have a big budget, but in our collective we always help each other out.

During INITIATIONS, we don’t just focus on our performances, but also on making our collective feel like a community. If this CULT and, by extension this drag scene, is going to be sustainable we need to learn about and from each other.

We’re veeeeery excited to tease that coming to a screen near you soon, you’ll be able to see much more about our whole process from start to finish – hint hint, wink wink.

INITIATIONS 3.0

We love doing INITIATIONS and we know how many of you were heartbroken not to get in to the first 2 rounds. But have no fear, once our loins have recovered from these last 10 babies (read: late 2024) we’ll be putting out another open call. Are you going to be the next devotee? 

Founders
Meatling the Meatbaby: Sam Message (they/them)
Sinfluencer: Kolbrún Inga Söring (they/them)

Initiates 2023
Anvil Lavigne: Leon (they/them)
Donna Touchme: Elsa (they/them)
Edgar Allan Hoe: Moa (they/them)
Kassandra Dramatik:
Theo Vasilopoulos (he/she)
Lilith - mother of demons: Tyra (she/her)
Sirena Searotique:  Tristan (he/him)
Sir Harvey Bang Bang: Karoline (she/her)
Sirius van der Lism: Gabriel (he/they)
Super Bimbo: Alva (they/them)

Initiates 2022
Doctor STYX Hexy: Sasha (they/them)
Glen the Alien: Stian Temdahl Sundström(they/them)

FILTHY Q: Leo Glitter(they/him)
The Receivers: Sara Lindquist(they/them) & Tove Pils (they/them)

Media  and Tech
Elsa Groener(she/her): Photography
Sára Bartošová(she/her) : Film
Isabel Taube(she/they) : Sound design

Space
Kolgruvan
Skjul Fyra Sex
Verket - en plats för kreativitet och möten - Göteborgs Stad (goteborg.se)

Rebel Drawing

What is Rebel Drawing?

This workshop series uses play, memory and collaborative making to explore lived experience as non normative and multiply marginalised people. In Rebel Drawing we begin by using our social practice as a way to connect and open up the group. Here we build a safer space and create a common framework for exploration and negotiation. Drawing on memories and lived experiences we share and collaboratively develop our ideas before picking up our Together Tools and getting stuck in.

Together tools

These are tools that can only be used by multiple hands at once, working together in negotiation. Our together tools focus on trans and queer joy and fill the room with laughter. This lets us delve deeper and make meaningful connections to our experiences, our bodies and each other.

Why do we need Rebel Drawing?

This society was not made for us. While some of us have been welcomed into the warmth of mainstream society, many of us have been left sitting in the cold. Marginalised people of all kinds are more likely to face alienation, minority stress and poor mental health. We’ve all heard these terms before but understanding of what this really means is scattered and fractured. Rebel Drawing is a chance for different groups of people to come together and share deep-reaching and meaningful memories and experiences through play and joy.

By making together and playing together we explore ourselves and each other.

Rebel Drawing at SJUKT for SJUKT x Not Your Habibi, 2023 – Image credit: Jessica Pettersson
Collaborations

While there is room for exploring closely queer and trans experiences through the workshop, Rebel Drawing is targeted more broadly at making a more inclusive society. Rebel Drawing is always tailored to the context of its hosting collaborator and has taken many different forms and is suitable for both youth and for adults.

Rebel Drawing at Frilagret 2022 – image: Status Queer

Themes so far have ranged from utopia to death, literary worlds to our everyday experiences.

Collaborators so far have included Frilagret, Galleri Box, Kolgruvan, Kulturhuset Bergsjön, Linnéstadens bibliotek, Not Your Habibi, Röda Sten Konsthall (GIBCA), Världskulturmuseet.

THIS IS THE QUEER SPACE

What is This is the Queer Space?

TITQS is a Gothenburg based platform for LGBTQ+ art and culture for and by LGBTQ+ people. It’s the glue that holds our newly formed community together, providing valuable safer social spaces. Events include everything from chill nights in to queer company for cultural celebrations to mouthwatering thumping bass

TITQS is here, it’s queer and that’s true throughout the whole goddamn year.

Its both an essential community space where people of different expressions can show up how they want. Whether that’s going all out with a look that took weeks to put together or coming in your cosy clothes, queer is queer enough and we want to make space for all expressions.

Gothenburg has an acute lack of spaces for LGBTQ+ people and many of us have had terrible experiences in the few spaces that exist. We need a space for us, by us, where we can shut out the transphobic, queerphobic and all the other phobics and isms outside the walls of our queer castle.

Pride comes around once a year, but TITQS is here to get us through the long dark Swedish winters together. It is here to bring us together and cement all the community building we do in our social practice as artist duo Status Queer.

SJUKT
SJUKT is a place of queer and trans euphoria. A safe haven where we let loose and get dressed up to the absolute nines. Every SJUKT has a theme and oh boy does our community know how to kill a look. Club Kids, drag artists and dancers abound, SJUKT is the space we all need to shake off all the shit of the cis-het world outside. Quite simply, it’s our space.

NON
NON is Gothenburg’s primary gender devour party. Working alongside Ballroom Exchange, NON brings underground queer culture into the city’s more established venues. In doing so, NON puts LGBTQ+ artists, performers and designers (aspiring and established) strut the runway and take the spotlight they deserve.

 

WE WERE THERE

What is We Were There?

In this workshop series we imagine what heritage-making institutions might look like if they represented the stories of all of us – the stories of nonnormative people, of marginalised and oppressed peoples, of border-crossers and of gender defiers. What if they were just as well represented as the powerful few favoured by our capitalist patriarchy (read: white, rich, upperclass, cis-het, male, able-bodied).

Why do we need We Were There?

The term LGBTQ+ may be a modern phenomenon — but boundary-crossers, norm-breakers and diversity in sexual orientation & gender identity have been recorded throughout written history and across the globe.

Our heritage is constantly being written and rewritten. It affects how we think about who we are and where we come from. But not all stories in our heritage were born equal. What survives has been filtered by the ableism, ageism, classism, queerphobia, racism, sexism and transphobia, which continue to plague our society. Quite simply, our stories are often hidden, lost or never even recorded in the first place.

But we were there. 

In this workshop series we ask: what would our archives and museums look like if our stories were as proudly present as those of normative and powerful people? In the workshops, participants explore alternative narratives and fabricated historical artefacts to play, experiment and get in touch with both non-normative lives in Gothenburg and their own experiences of the city. 

Does your institution need a queer intervention? Our ears are open, get in touch with us now!

Collaborations

In this series we not only play with past and present as a way to explore our identities, we also place key emphasis on giving participants tangible skills for engaging with the museum and its exhibitions. We want participants to make new connections with these spaces and to feel that they belong to them too. As such, each workshop is carefully tailored to its host to engage with its specific heritages and institutional histories.

Collaborators so far include Göteborgs stadsmuseum, Göteborgs konstmuseum and Sjöfartsmuseet Akvariet with a number of exciting new collaborations coming 2024!

FESTIVALS

In 2023 we were invited by GIBCA: Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art's exhibition ‘Forms of the surrounding futures’ at Röda Sten Konsthall to host both a performative guided tour PEEK! Live and a workshop Rebel drawing.

Photo credit: Röda Sten Konsthall     


PEEK! Live : Performative guided tour
For our performative guided tour PEEK! Live, we took the public on an exciting yet bizarre and critical exploration of the gorgeous exhibition, using our drag characters Meatling the Meatbaby (Sam Message) and Sinfluencer (Kolbrún Inga Söring).


Rebel Drawing workshop
For our workshop Rebel Drawing we dug into what it means to be queer and trans in Gothenburg, our ideas about community, possible futures and utopias. We also explored and responded to the exhibition ‘forms of the surrounding futures’ - but on *our* terms.

In 2023 we joined Open Out Festival for the second time around to kick off their debut Queer Cinema event with a taste of our relational exercises around the festival’s theme CURRENTS.

Photo credit: Daniela Toma

For the debut of Open Out‘s new Queer Cinema we were invited to create an event around queer moving image in the nordic countries. The event was produced in collaboration with Iceland-based Flat Earth Film Festival and SAQMI (The Swedish Archive of Queer Moving Images). and Status Queer to collaborate on an event around Queer Moving Image in the Nordics. 

The screening program featured a variety of multiply-marginalised voices around the Nordic region and the United States. Such voices have immense value, yet are often excluded from the mainstream. Through this collaboration, the event sought to bring more of these stories to light through the medium of moving image.


All Photos: Daniela Toma

With this new addition to the festival, Open Out Cinema hopes to bring a sense of community and awareness of the variety of queer existence across the vast Nordic regions.

What is Open Out?
Here’s how Open Out describes themselves:

‘Open Out is an annual festival that consists of various exhibitions, performances, film screenings, as well as educative events like seminars and workshops, in different locations around town. The unifying theme for the festival is queerness.’

Read more on their website

Our participation came in the form of a large-scale site specific spatial installation called Glory Pocket.
This work provided intense sensory experiences using colour, texture and a soundscape by Isabel Taube. We further enhanced this through both scripted and non-scripted interactions to get participants playing with the space and with each other. This included a performative lecture within the structure which emphasised and encouraged non-scripted interactions, radical play and disruption of the passive audience ritual of artworks.


Through this work we continued to explore familiar themes to our practice: ritual, utopias and the bizarre. 

What is Open Out?

Here’s how Open Out describes themselves:

‘Open Out is an annual festival that consists of various exhibitions, performances, film screenings, as well as educative events like seminars and workshops, in different locations around town. The unifying theme for the festival is queerness.’

Read more on their website

MOTGIFTET

What is MOTGIFTET?

In this project (translation: the antidote) is a space we make in Gothenburg to come together as a community, unwind, tool-up and heal. This workshop series serves up local and international talent from across a variety of different artistic and cultural disciplines to get us exploring ourselves and each other.

Why do we need MOTGIFTET?

We live in a racist, ableist, ageist, queerphobic, transphobic and all-the-other-terrible-ists-and-phobics world. We need MOTGIFTET to exchange knowledges and skills, and to give space for us to celebrate ourselves and enjoy each other.

The series seeks to empower new creators and artists-to-be. We do this both by introducing participants to new mediums and by acting as a platform where artists and knowledge holders of all different levels of experience can have the chance to develop and lead their own workshops.

MOTGIFTET #6: Secret Sound Gardens with Isabel Taube 2022 – image credit: Status Queer

MOTGIFTET also gives us a framework to continue developing our collaborations with our international partners from The Queer Agenda.

MOTGIFTET #2: Club Kid Drink & Draw 2021 – image credit: Status Queer

MOTGIFTET builds on the work we started in Sparkplug 1.0 by providing the framework and glue needed to keep  us together as a community.

MOTGIFTET #8: Together Tools at Världskulturmuseet
For this workshop series we collaborated with Världskulturmuseset to make a drop-in workshop about exploring our memories of those near and dear and those far and passed-away. Throughout, we used our ‘Together Tools’ - tools for making that need many hands at once to use.

MOTGIFTET #7: Grönglöd
For this edition of Motgiftet, Status Queer supported musician Mo Wiklund (they/hen) to realise an premiere event of their film Grönglöd. The project and evening saw different mediums come together in exploring how queerness can meet nature. During the event there was a screening, performance, workshops, an exhibition and more.


MOTGIFTET #6: Secret Sound Gardens
With a pair of headphones, a soundscape can be a soothing slice of a queer/trans utopia wherever you need it to be. In this workshop led by sound artist Isabel Taube, participants explored audio storytelling through in-browser software and free sample sites. This workshop was target at both those who are adding to their self-expression toolbox as well as those who have already dipped their toes into sound’s soothing waters.


MOTGIFTET #5: Daniel Mariblanca
Taking the artistic process from his dance project 71BODIES as a starting point, this workshop got us engaging with each other by exploring self boundaries and dancing together through improvisational tasks all while working through physical and mental challenges. Through Daniel’s guidance, we focused on searching for personal and unique dance qualities with every participant. 

Most of all, we had fun, experimented with the body and expanded our contact with others.

MOTGIFTET #4: Feminist Culture House
This workshop explored collaborations and agreement writing in the arts and cultural field. Peer support, collective sharing, and community building are central elements of Feminist Culture House’s practice, so this workshop was conversational—together, we practiced thinking about our needs and created small zines about them. Through their guidance and experience of feminist practice in approaching collaborations, they introduced tools for welcoming trans artists and arts workers into safe collaborative relationships.


MOTGIFTET #3: Teaching To Transgress Toolbox

For this workshop we created a workshop with the material produced by the TTTT working group ‘Who’s in the classroom?’. The workshop focused on the many aspects of the ‘Pronoun Go-round’ and focused on three main elements: ice breakers, names & pronouns and accessibility. The main focus was to explore more intersectional and inclusive educational and working environments as well as to give participants the tools to apply them to their own contexts. 

You can find more about our research in our feature with Pedagogisk Peppare’s podcast ‘Towards universities as safe, inclusive, and accessible spaces’

 


MOTGIFTET #2: Club Kid Drink & Draw
In this playful workshop, Sam Message and Kolbrún Inga Söring broke down the ‘I can’t draw’ narrative with a variety of exciting and experimental drawing techniques. Featuring 3 stunning club kid models). Participants played with tools like ‘edward-charcoal-hands’ and huge bendy foam rods to capture the naughty club kid aesthetic.


MOTGIFTET #1: Club Kids Then and Now Screening
Drawing on the long history of queer boundary crossers and gender benders, Sam Message put together a snap shot of the Club Kid culture with a series of long and short films. This workshop was produced in collaboration with This is the Queer Space in preparation for the launch of their party SJUKT – a space where attendees are encouraged to get wild with their looks.

Daniel Mariblanca (he/him)
Daniel Mariblanca has 15 years of experience dancing professionally and a degree from l'Institut del Teatre, in Barcelona, Spain. Shortly after beginning as a dancer with the Norwegian National Company of Contemporary Dance/ Carte Blanche, Daniel created his own company 71BODIES; a transgender inclusive dance & performance company.

Feminist Culture House
FCH is a Helsinki-based non-profit working with and for underrepresented artists.  They work towards equitable futures and advancing feminist politics in the arts through providing learning opportunities for individuals and institutions. They focus on creating tools for change to create fair working conditions, better representation, and more inclusive institutional structures.
Read more:

Jonathan Hatila (they/them)
This fierce fashion feast is a non-binary, glitter loving and genderfucking godess who hates all kinds of norms.

Kolbrún Inga Söring (they/them)
Kolbrún Inga Söring is a gender queer artist working in Gothenburg whose work spans several areas of artistic expression from performance, video work and site-specific installation to community cultivation and cultural production. They currently run the organisation Status Queer.

Leo Glitter (they/he)
Leo is a genderbender extraordinaire, ready to challenge cisnormative bullshit with genderfuckery, glitter & chaotic sex appeal… as soon as they get up from the bed & their tv marathon with their depression in check.

Sam Message (they/them)
Sam is an artist and activist working with the spatial & the relational to explore connections between people. As a drag-performer they put their bizarre, playful and punk-like aesthetic to explore the surreal, the subversive and the political. They are both a researcher of queering practice and theory and a curator specialising in queer and feminist histories and themes. Other work includes inclusion, accessibility and engagement consultation, education and evaluation.

Sasha(they/them)
Sasha is a Shape shifting performance lover doing whatever they want.

Teaching To Transgress Toolbox
“Based on peer-learning and collective research practices, Teaching To Transgress Toolbox* is a research and study programme on critical pedagogy in the arts. Funded by the European Union and developed transnationally by three art schools: erg (BrusselsBE), HDK-Valand (GothenburgSE) and ISBA (BesançonFR) this Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership (2019–2022) consisted of workshops, public events and an open access publishing platform that shares the resulting works, methods and tools with others to use in their specific educational contexts.”

who's in the classroom?
who’s in the classroom? Is a collectively written educational material which includes text,  video and audio interviews, drawings, Pronoun go-round guides(EN/SE/FR) and lots of resources. The work was written by Åke Sjöberg, Eva Weinmayr, Flo*Souad Benaddi, Kolbrún Inga Söring with great additional help from MC Coble, Nika Dahlberg-Melin, Sam Message, Tori & Håkan, Kasra, Jean Paul and Reb.

      

   

PEEK!

What is PEEK!?

In this collaboration with photographer Elsa Groener, we use drag to challenge and disrupt norms in public spaces and institutions. Together we explore different power dynamics, ritualistic behaviours and trans & queer hypervisibility.

Why do we need PEEK!?

As highly visible queer and trans people, we are used to having all eyes on us. This project began by supercharging this experience by going into busy public spaces as our attention grabbing drag characters – shopping centres, city squares and public transport. The first step to solidarity is understanding. With the first iteration of this project we used photo and installation to give the viewer a taste of hyper-visibility and increase their understanding of our experiences in public.

Read more about this on the Installation tab.

Queer(ing) Photography 2023, (exhibition, screening & Panel) Centrum för fotografi X SAQMI X Status Queer

Many assume the work for equality is finished here in Gothenburg. Yet for many who either cannot or refuse to blend in with the mainstream, this is simply not the case. With this installation we want those who do not share this experience to be instilled with the sense of urgency and allyship that we need to keep the struggle moving forward. None of us should be left behind. 

PEEK! Live

As the project developed we also found the power of drag to subvert different kinds of spaces, so we put it to work challenging and subverting norms within public cultural institutions. Here we used our personas to disassemble and recombobulate the rituals of these spaces through caricature and play. Our cultural institutions should be for all of us. 

PEEK! Live, CIBCA 2023, Röda Sten Konsthall, photo credit: Röda Sten Konsthall

By utilising drag’s growing visibility and popularity, we draw in new crowds which perhaps would not otherwise be visiting these spaces. Here we help make these spaces more democratic and more socially sustainable by building new bridges with different groups and communities.

Read more about this on the PEEK! Live tab.

Our drag characters

Meatling the Meatbaby (Sam Message)

Meatling’s performances use the bizarre, the comedic and the shocking. From dictatorial speeches to fingering felt pussies to completion, the only thing you know to expect is you’re in for a proper show. In their work they seek to bring together a broad coalition in the community and use the stage to put a critical lens on gender, norms and systems of oppressions. Even though they engage with heavy themes, their vibrant performances always focus queer and trans joy as a way to process, reclaim and build community.

Sinfluencer (Kolbrún Inga Söring)

Inga’s work centres around politics of desire, body modification, social media and critical reflection on socio-cultural norms and practices. Performance here becomes an ideal medium where through auto-theoretical writing centres their own body as opposition, where they are a continuous subject of gaze, opinions and of a resistance to boundary breaking individuals such as themselves.

We also explored the power of drag to command a space and our ability to wield its power to disrupt and subvert. This became the entry point to our performative interventions in other kinds of public places. 

Here we use drag to challenge the rituals of cultural spaces. We all know the Gallery Pose™️: one foot in front of the other, hands behind the back, standing long enough in front of an object until others in the room think that you “get it”.

In our performative tours we use caricature and our own rituals to break this mould. We play with worship, sound and physicality to get the audience moving and interacting in new ways. Here we claim space for ourselves whilst at the same time giving audiences tangible skills in engaging with the works. 

PEEK! Live was first launched at GIBCA: Göteborg International Bienniel of Contemporary Art for their exhibition Forms of the Surrounding Futures at Röda Sten Konsthall. We got on our knees to worship, cruised seductively through hanging works and lay together, letting out gutteral weeping screams. With twists, turns and exhibition texts copied onto bare bums we, used the bizarre and playful to bring out smiles on our well attended interactive performative tour.

We’ve got big plans for this project, so keep your eyes peeled for 2024!

This project began as a series of photoshoots in public spaces where we supercharged our hypervisibility as queer, trans people through our outrageous drag personas Meatling the Meatbaby (Sam Message) and Sinfluencer (Kolbrún Inga Söring).

From the mundanity of commuting with the city bus to the small joy of buying an icecream from the corner shop we proudly stuck out like a sore thumb in normative Scandinavia. As we peacocked through these space, photographer Elsa Groener covertly captured the reactions of onlookers - both positive and negative. These ranged from broad smiles, pointing children and giddy giggles to pure shock, verbal abuse and being pelted by liquorice (perhaps the most Scandinavian hate crime ever).

The installation consisted of a hanging cloud of reactions which the audience walked through to get a taste of how hypervisibility feels. 

At the end of this tunnel of eyes, gasps and gapes we used a proud image where our drag characters where unapologetically ourselves. They might stare, but our armour of self-made pride is a carefully built monument to cherish and behold. Our message is clear: Queer joy wins over public scrutiny.

Elsa Groener (she/her)
Elsa Groener is a visual Anthropologist and photographer

SPARKPLUG

What is Sparkplug?

Sparkplug is a festival of LGBTQ+ delights designed to bring together the most marginalised groups under the LGBTQ+. 

For Sparkplug 1.0 we used large scale installation and jam packed week of exciting programming to kickstart the growth of a new, more inclusive, more supportive LGBTQ+ community here in Gothenburg.

Sparkplug 2.0 is in the pipeline, so hold tight Helsinki, you’re in our sights…

Why do we need Sparkplug?

Our community is fractured and acceptance of LGBTQ+ people has been incredibly uneven.

We need a community so we can support each other and build a better path forward together, but to do this we need to harmonise. Harmonising doesn’t mean becoming the same, it means finding a way to all sing our own tune whilst resonating with others. It means that together we can create something more than just the sum of our parts.

As the starting point for a new harmonisation, Sparkplug 1.0 used two key types of tools to get this music flowing: relational ones and spatial ones. Where the spatial is all about sensory experiences like colour, form, texture and lighting, the relational is all about connecting with people in different ways. 

This is part of a methodology we’ve developed called Community Cultivation. To give you a quick crash course, we’re using Community Cultivation’s spatial and relational tools to bring together new groups of people from different marginalised groups under the LGBTQ+ umbrella and get them to interact with each other. We use this methodology to guide different kinds of interactions with the ultimate goal of fostering new relationships and, in turn, lay the foundations for a more intersectionality diverse LGBTQ+ community.

SUSTAINABILITY

After Sparkplug 1.0 we secured a home for all our custom built furniture, which you can now find at Ringön based creative powerhouse and coworking space Kolgruvan.

Since the festival we’ve also used and re-used all the materials — whether that’s drag looks for CULT, tools for MOTGIFTET or materials for Initiations. The rest is waiting patiently for its second debut, so keep your eyes peeled, you might see some old friends in the future again.

The Spatial

We had two tasks with the spatial:

  1. To create an environment which encouraged play and upset the rules. 

OUR SPACE OUR RULES

Walking into the gallery, you were immediately confronted with a pulsating, mouthwatering interruption to the sleek yeet bland navy, beige and black Scandinavian world outside. Just as we as a community break with normative life we made our space to break with normative aesthetics.

Sparkplug 1.0’s captivating sensory experience set the stage to move away from the cis-het norms that dominate our social world. At the same time though, being in such an alien space also had us feeling a little alien. If this was going to be the springboard for a new community, for a new home, we first needed to claim this space for ourselves.

Throughout the festival, workshops continually added to the space. We hung up our work, painted directly on the walls and furniture, created freestanding sculptures and left our traces as we pleased. Through our work and our play we claimed ownership over this space together. This built a special connection between us and the space  – in turn this allowed the space to become a medium through which we could connect to those we hadn’t directly worked with.

THE SPACE THAT HUGGED

photo: Henrik Zeitler

While the first space was a place to get wet and wild, we also needed somewhere to collect ourselves, connect with ourselves and savour a slice of cooling calm.

At the back of the project space lay a shrouded entrance. Through this entrance came an outstretched peace offering: a hand holding a plant-cutting. In Gothenburg this plant is known as the ‘lesbisk nässla’ or ‘lesbian nettle’. The origin of the name is said to come from how easy it is to take cuttings from it. As the folklore goes, once one lesbian gets one, it spreads like wildfire through their circle. Textile artist Esse McChesney based their work for the Project Space on this ol’ queer Gothenburg tale, taking the ‘lesbian nettle’ as a symbol for our community’s sharing and caring: queer love, if you will!

Plunging into this entrance took you to the source of our space’s otherness – the portal. The Portal Room was designed to expand the space’s versatility. The Portal Rooms’ cool throbbing lights, encapsulating fabrics and dampened sound created a stark contrast to the bustling vibrant room lying just beyond the entrance. 

Throughout the week we used this space for reflection, and to take those quieter moments where we needed to get vulnerable with each other. With its completely different feeling to the Project Space, the portal room opened up a whole new set of possibilities for the kinds of relational work we could do with each other.

Sparkplug 1.0 was a space between spaces. It was a space between the world of ablist, racist, ageist, sexist, classist, cis-het bullshit outside and the queer utopia lying somewhere out of reach, beyond the portal. Sparkplug 1.0 sought to upset these overpowering systems; and even if we couldn’t override them completely, our two space’s gave us room to at least start that process.

  1. To create a space which could host all of our relational work. 

This is where the Swiss Army Space comes in: we needed a space to host everything from drag workshops to mural painting, embroidery to vogue, film screenings to karaoke, social space to open space. Furniture we built to make this happen included folding benches and tables that turned into room dividers.

Our furniture also needed to work as tools in our unscripted relation work. The flowing organic shape of our benches were made to be the heart of the room, where people naturally would collect. It became a place where people could meet in smaller groups, whilst also facilitating the mixing of these groups to make broader conversations. With the help of all our structured relational work, this became a space where relative strangers came together to share intimate experiences of being LGBTQ+ in Gothenburg.

The Relational

Once we had claimed ownership over the space together, the stage was set to build new relationships in our fractured community. Together, the workshopping and the spatial work paved the way for the crucial next step: getting into the nitty-gritty. We put on a buffet of different events from high energy – think a room full of hyped up queers and trans people chanting ‘gay power’ over and over again, an activity which deffinately did not upset the neighbours… thanks Speech Karaoke – down to careful contemplation.

This all fostered a lot of discussions – joyful ones, confronting ones, caring ones, difficult ones – and a lot of listening – listening to dreams, to frustration, to demands, to consolations, to play.

We had spontaneous discussions, structured discussions and prompted discussions. To spark these conversations, and to guide them, we used a variety of starting points from following scripts and our Together Tools (tools you can only use in collaboration with others) to film screenings and panel & round-table discussions.

These discussions helped us understand the different struggles, challenges and joys that we face across our incredibly varied community here in Gothenburg.

MAKING TOGETHER

Whether it was preaching impassioned speeches or sissying our swaying hips, embroidering rainy umbrellas or jumbling together non-binary characters, painting walls or painting faces, we did a lot of making together! Check out the gallery tab to get a taste of the action.

Our workshops were designed by and for people who belong to our 5 priority LGBTQ+ groups – racialised people, working class/precarious people, people with disabilities, elders and binary & nonbinary trans people. You can read more about our approach to accessibility and inclusion here.

Throughout the festival, we drew on the strengths of local talent and our international partners from The Queer Agenda to put on a deliciously varied spread of workshops to tantalise people of different tastes – we wanted to make sure there was at least 1 thing that got people’s juices flowing!

COMMUNITY

We built a space that broke with the norms outside its walls. Then we helped our community claim it for their own. In doing so, those that took part built a special relationship with both the space and each other. This made people feel at home and created fertile ground for new relations to sprout.

During this time we also made room for ‘open space’ – giving the chance for those in the community to turn up and do what they wanted with the space. From impromptu lip sync competitions to drawing to runway presentation on the street outside we used the space how we wanted to.

So, did it work?

Since Sparkplug 1.0 we’ve seen the seeds we planted burst out of the ground. First they were just small shoots, but with our continued nurturing and fertilising with the help of all our fabulous collaborators we’ve seen these plants grow into sturdy young saplings. Read more about our artistic endevours, and the social spaces our siblings at This is the Queer Space to find out more!

Where there is plenty of work still to go, we are well on our way to the sustainable, inclusive and diverse LGBTQ+ community we dream of. Onwards and upwards Gothenburg!

Much of our work with Sparkplug 1.0 was informed and guided by our network of LGBTQ+ artist’s, cultural producers and community organisers The Queer Agenda. Read more about that here.

Demba Sabally (he/him)
Demba is one of the Gothenburg leaders in the Voguing scene. He has walked balls in Paris, Oslo, Copenhagen and more. He goes by 007 in the main scene and Marciano in the Kiki scene. He mostly walks Butch Queen European Runway but he also walks Vogue femme.

 

THE DRIN (inside) PROJECT: DIVERSITY, REPRESENTATION, INCLUSION, NORM CRITIQUE
The DRIN project wants to enable everyone to participate in our societies, focusing on children’s books. The project brings players in the field together, shares knowledge, forms networks of empowerment and promotes standards for more diverse children’s literature in the European context.

Elias Ericson (he/him)
Elias is an illustrator and comic artist who has published three books: Åror (2013), Blompojken (2014) and Diana & Charlie (2021). Overwhelming emotions, LGBTQ experiences and mental health are all important topics and inspirations to what he creates.

Esse McChessney (they/them)
Esse is a queer textile artist in Gothenburg that works with weaving, fabric collages and embroidery. In their work they investigte gender and sexuality from the point of being a queer non-binary transperson. Their work circles around gender and body; What do bodies have to do with gender? And where does gender identity exist outside the body and in feelings? In their work you can also find symbolism, a lot of color, abstractions and balance.

Kolbrún Inga Söring (they/them)
Kolbrún Inga Söring is a gender queer artist working in Gothenburg whose work spans several areas of artistic expression from performance, video work and site-specific installation to community cultivation and cultural production. They currently run the organisation Status Queer.

Newcomers Göteborg
Newcomers is a social platform and network for LGBTQI refugees and migrants. Newcomers is a part of RFSL Gothenburg which meets regularly to do activities chosen by its members.

Romas Zabarauskas (he/him)
Romas is a unique cinematic voice from the Baltics, Romas is equally known in his home country as an openly gay, outspoken LGBT+ rights activist. His feature film Advokatas/The Lawyer (2020) is the first Lithuanian feature film focusing on a male same-sex romantic relationship and one of the very few fiction films about the LGBTQ+ refugee experience in Europe.

Sam Message (they/them)
Sam is an artist and activist working with the spatial & the relational to explore connections between people. As a drag-performer they put their bizarre, playful and punk-like aesthetic to explore the surreal, the subversive and the political. They are both a researcher of queering practice and theory and a curator specialising in queer and feminist histories and themes. Other work includes inclusion, accessibility and engagement consultation, education and evaluation.

Speech Karaoke
Speech Karaoke is a fun-loving, intersectional communal art project. Speech Karaoke resembles ordinary karaoke, but instead of doing a song, you do a speech. In addition to over 800 speeches in 17 languages already in our catalogue, we have new speeches curated and created especially for this event. Welcome, everyone!

This is the Queer Space
This is the Queer Space is a platform working to bring Gothenburg safer LGBTQ+ social spaces. The platform works closely with Status Queer to strengthen and deepen relationships instigated by Status Queer’s Community Cultivation methodology.

We are so grateful to our funders, without which we would never have been able to lay the ground work for the little slice of queer utopia we’re trying to bring to earth.

Sparkplug 1.0 was supported by:

THE QUEER AGENDA

What is The Queer Agenda?

The Queer Agenda is a network of LGBTQ+ artists, cultural producers and community builders from across the Nordic and Baltic regions. Our fields vary from film making to illustration, intersectional organising to dance and more! 

In our network we share knowledges across our different practices and Nordic/Baltic cultural contexts.

Why do we need The Queer Agenda?

As LGBTQ+ cultural producers, community builders and individuals we face lots of different and specific challenges. These challenges vary enormously depending on who we are, where we come from and in what situation we are in. In the face of these challenges we have learnt to be resilient and innovative in order to not just survive but to thrive. In our work as a network we seek to learn from each other’s success and mistakes. 

We also work to strengthen the ties between marginalised LGBTQ+ people from around the Nordic/Baltic region to open up new opportunities for collaboration and cross-pollination.

Round 1

In the first round of The Queer Agenda, we explored our utopic visions and dreams for the future by drawing on our different experiences and knowledges from the past. Through a series of workshops we tackled issues facing us as LGBTQ+ organisers and artists and explored our desires for utopian queer spaces and relations. 

Screenshot: Status Queer
Screenshot: Status Queer

Sparkplug 1.0

We drew directly on this process for our contribution to installation for Sparkplug 1.0 and also developed 2 artist’s briefs – one for a local Gothenburg-based artist and one for an international partner organisation to respond to for the festival.

The first was a spatial brief which Esse McChesney responded to and the other was a relational brief, assigned to Feminist Culture House. 

All members of the network were invited to contribute a progamme point during the festival, check out more about the exciting programme we put together here!

Round 2

Right now we are recruiting for round 2 of The Queer Agenda, so if you are or know an artist, cultural producer or community builder working within the LGBTQ+ community please get in touch here. 

Our Priority Groups

Our inclusion strategy recognises that many marginalised LGBTQ+ people face barriers in accessing traditional pathways to the world of art and culture. That’s why we work to include voices which are excluded by the art world’s systems of ‘professionalisation’, especially those from our priority groups. So whether or not you consider yourself a professional artist, we still want to hear from you. Your knowledge is especially valuable, so please don’t hesitate to get in touch here.

Find out if you belong to one of our priority groups here.

Daniel Mariblanca(he/him)
Daniel Mariblanca has 15 years of experience dancing professionally and a degree from l'Institut del Teatre, in Barcelona, Spain. Shortly after beginning as a dancer with the Norwegian National Company of Contemporary Dance/ Carte Blanche, Daniel created his own company 71BODIES; a transgender inclusive dance & performance company. 

Feminist Culture House
Feminist Culture House  is an intersectional feminist organisation based in Helsinki working for and with underrepresented artists. Their vision is to advocate for ''intersectional and feminist values and working conditions, resulting in an art field working sustainably, and thoroughly occupied and built by different kinds of bodies and identities.'' 

Peter Nylund(he/him)
Peter Nylund is an artist and activist, working in the intersections of racial, gender and sexual justice. Formerly a professional boxer Peter still always has a foot in the world of athleticism and loves to promote a healthy and active lifestyle to the community. Health is wealth, as they say.

Romas Zabarauskas (he/him)
Romas is a unique cinematic voice from the Baltics, Romas is equally known in his home country as an openly gay, outspoken LGBT+ rights activist. His feature film Advokatas/The Lawyer (2020) is the first Lithuanian feature film focusing on a male same-sex romantic relationship and one of the very few fiction films about the LGBTQ+ refugee experience in Europe.

Speech Karaoke
Speech Karaoke is a fun-loving, intersectional communal art project. Speech Karaoke resembles ordinary karaoke, but instead of doing a song, you do a speech. In addition to over 800 speeches in 17 languages already in our catalogue, we have new speeches curated and created especially for this event. Welcome, everyone!

Sindre Rydhard(they/them)
Sindre is a performer, communicator and event organiser. They go by Sugar as a stage name because they sprinkle sweetness into everything they do even though they sometimes look scary. They are a part of the Gothenburg ballroom scene and the international ballroom house of Milan. Royal Iconic House of Milan.

THE DRIN (inside) PROJECT: DIVERSITY, REPRESENTATION, INCLUSION, NORM CRITIQUE
The DRIN project wants to enable everyone to participate in our societies, focusing on children’s books. The project brings players in the field together, shares knowledge, forms networks of empowerment and promotes standards for more diverse children’s literature in the European context.

TRAINING: INCREASING INCLUSION

What is Increasing Inclusion?

This programme encompasses a variety of training sessions, workshops and tools we use to help organisations and individuals become more welcoming and inclusive to marginalised people from across the LGBTQ+ spectrum. These sessions can be either digital or in person, in Swedish or English. Each is also tailor made on request and are available for both cultural institutions and the wider commercial and state sectors.

We’ve presented our work with these themes in a number of different forums, most recently at University of Gothenburg’s Form for Heritage. You can also listen to Pedagogisk Peppare’s podcast about our work last year here.

Our Approach

In our work we draw on our academic backgrounds, our Gothenburg-specific research and a variety of local and international collaborations to put together a series of different inclusion tools. We know that everyone needs to do their bit, that’s why our diversity and inclusion work is designed to be as accessible and practically applicable as possible. 

Our philosophy is rooted in a deep and textured intersectional analysis, you can read more about our own approach to diversity and inclusion here.

Our goal is to give these tools to organisations, working groups and individuals seeking to build more inclusive working, studying and social environments – so please don’t hesitate to get in touch to see how we can help you be more inclusive.

For professional engagements, our fee is available on request.

Increasing Inclusion Lecture and workshop at Folk Teatern in Gothenburg (2023)
Why do you need our Diversity & Inclusion Programme?

We all have a role to play in making this world more welcoming and inclusive to all different intersections under the LGBTQ+ umbrella, so please get in touch to see how we can help you change your workplace or study environment.

We tailor our approach to your specific needs, so whatever your situation we can design a programme with maximum lasting impact.

Introducing our newest project: SQ Shop!
SQ shop is a great way to directly support LGBTQ+ artists and get your hands on some seriously fabulous pieces without spending an arm and a leg.

Click here to go directly to our shop and find out more!

What’s on Offer?
We’re constantly on the lookout for new and exciting artists to feature in our shop. Check out the gallery below to see what we’ve got on offer right now.

Himmel på himmel

Want to become a member of Status Queer?

Want to know more?

What to get involved or help out?

Want to intern with our organisation?

Know about something you think can help us?

Have any questions at all about our activities or really anything else? Get in touch!

You can reach us via email: info@statusqueer.se

Where it all began: Gothenburg

Despite how accepting you might think Gothenburg and Sweden as a whole is, the sad truth is that many LGBTQ+ people still face harassment, hostile environments and even violence. This is especially true for those LGBTQ+  who also belong to other marginalised groups. The same can be said for those of us who do not comply with society’s expectations of how we should behave and express ourselves.

On top of that, Gothenburg is highly segregated. Our city is divided along lines of class, (dis-)ability, economic precarity, country of origin, racialisation and more. These divides also cut across the LGBTQ+ community too, but it doesn’t stop there. We’re also split along lines of gender, sexuality and age.

Sadly, the offer of spaces who advertise themselves as ‘LGBT’ is very limited and those that exist have been fiercely criticised from within the community as enabling and even directly contributing to ableism, racism, queerphobia and transphobia.

It was from this picture of the LGBTQ+ community – a community which was fractured and shattered – that we started Status Queer as a project to heal, unite and include.

While we were able to draw on our own academic backgrounds to form this analysis, we wanted to be sure that both our starting point and our inclusion strategy were actually effective. That’s why we worked with ethnographer Maros Ondrejka, who came to study our work over a period of 6 months in 2021.

Growing the Grassroots

Our work is by no means over, but after years of work we have seen the green shoots of a new community. Read on to find out more about some of the specific measures that we as Status Queer and supporting initiative This is the Queer Space use to actively bring together sustainable, supportive and intersectionality diverse groups of LGBTQ+ people.

While we continue to work in Gothenburg – and continue research its specific socio-cultural context – we’ve also been exploring our methodologies in other contexts, keep your eyes peeled for some exciting news on that soon!

Through our research into the specific cultural and social landscape of Gothenburg’s LGBTQ+ community we have identified a number of groups facing the highest levels of marginalisation. These groups are those most in need of a supportive community. That’s why we prioritise art & culture which is for and by members of our priority groups.

Our 5 (LGBTQ+) priority groups are:
  • Binary & non-binary trans people
  • Newly arrived people
  • People living with disabilities
  • Racialised people
  • Working class / economically precarious people

We have also identified an additional 3 key groups essential to include if we are to build a sustainable and broad community.

Our 3 (LGBTQ+) key groups: 
  • Elders
  • Rainbow Families
  • Youth

Inclusion is never a passive process and, guided by feedback and research, we’re constantly evolving our strategies to reach and include more and more people. 

Our research is built on three central approaches:
  1. We draw on our own research backgrounds in accessibility and inclusion. These backgrounds encompass qualitative and quantitative research methodologies from the arts, cultural studies and social sciences. Through a variety of theoretical perspectives we form the basis of our analysis of the nebulous and overlapping systemic oppressions facing our community.
  2. We commission specific targeting research to address gaps in our strategy. Here we favour in-depth qualitative research and work with researchers who use ethnographic methodologies to first map out a specific issue. The research continues by zooming in on specific issues and bringing in a variety of perspectives through in-depth interviews and focus group work.
  3. Collaborations with organisations working with similar themes. These collaborations take either a direct research focus or come through a converging of working practices within other projects. Collaborators include amazing projects like Feminist Culture House, Teaching To Transgress Toolbox, Pedagogisk Peppare and Goethe institute Finland’s DRIN (Inside).

Some of the measures we use right now to include our priority groups include reserving spaces in workshops, paying for transport & waiving ticket fees, offering economic, advisory & administrative support to independent projects and prioritising work for and by our priority groups throughout our practice.

Through our diversity and inclusion training programme, we also work to spread best practice approaches to inclusion in the community, in workplaces and in classrooms. 

Self Determination

We want a community built on trust. We have confidence that our community members  know who they are and what they need. When someone tells us they need access, we do what we can to meet those requirements, no questions asked. 

Against Professionalism

We do not believe that art is more or less valuable based on how educated or professionally recognised the producer is. What is deemed to be “real” art is a reflection of our society’s racist, xenophobic, queerphobic, transphobic & ableist past and present. That’s why it is essential for us to support and collaborate with artists and artists-to-be who do not conform to the art worlds professionalising norms.

Art and culture costs money to make, that’s the simple fact! While there are lots of different types of funding and financial support, many require you to be a “professional” artist – which entails either university education in the arts or a number of years working as a ‘professional’ artist (a status hard to achieve without having had access to funding during those years…). Those who’ve had access to the ‘correct’ paths into the art world tend to be whiter, wealthier, more able bodied, and more likely to conform to norms around sexuality and gender.

If you are an artist or an artist-to-be belonging to our priority groups and you want support or advice for your project, you’re ever so welcome to get in touch with us.

Healthy Collaborations

The basis of all our work is an empathetic feminist working practice. That means setting clear boundaries and expectations for ourselves and others and placing people not performance at the heart of every project. Structure, negotiation and compromise are all essential to a healthy collaboration so if you want to work with us expect to be taken care of, just as we expect you to take care of us.