The Drag Rebirth
If there is something clear is that the Spanish and European Drag scene is rising stronger than ever. We remember with nostalgia those years in which the Drag was respected by other artists, valued by the entrepreneurs and cheered by general public/audiences. It seems that global economic crisis that we have “overcome” made the collective fade out, as performances and night shows had to readjust to the new economy. For this reason, Drags were banned from the shows and many professionals had to move out from their hometowns and/or look for otherjobs to survive.
We think Drag international community is living a rebirth. The new generations of Drag come stronger than ever, partly favored by easy access to social networks and new technologies, which allow them to be publicly known, virtually anywhere in the world with access to: clothing, large size shoes, wigs, make-up… and not only that, but there are also countless tutorials on the internet where users show and exchange fabulous makeup tips for beginners, how to comb their wigs, how to tuck, how to pronounce their cleavege, and in the case of the Drag Kings, how to “grow” a temporary beard and mustache.
OK guys, the Drag collective is not just composed by Drag Queens, there are also Drag Kings, Non-binary Drags, Faux Queens (Bio queens, Hyper Queens, Female Queens), Creatures or Drag Monsters, Drag Kids… The Drag collective is as wide as diverse people are, as big as the creativity that each artist in particular may contribute to his/her drag, and as diverse as the number of professionals devoted to this art and participate in the process of creation. The Drag collective, national and global, is composed by artists (performers, comedians, monologuists, singers, dancers, make-up artists, hairdressers, tailors… etc) who use their creativity to entertain us, to make us think, or sometimes to educate ourselves and always to create an ephemeral fantasy that appears and disappears magically. Art in motion that can be enjoyed in some LGTBI+ places but still not sufficiently valued as it deserves in current society.
The concept of #visibilidrag began in January 2018 with a hashtag in Instagram created by the photographer and Drag ERREBEENE and in September 2018 was again boosted with the launch of DRAG IS BURNING project from Barcelona, created and promoted by the graphic designer and illustrator RUBEN ANTÓN.
The goal in 2019 is to visualize the Drag collective through the hashtag #visibilidrag and the Instagram account: VISIBILIDRAG where we do welcome lovers and followers of this art as well as all kinds of Drags: Queens, Kings, Non-binaries, Faux queens, Creatures, Kids… Without judging or taking into account their experience, how long they are on the Drag scene or place of residence. This project was born to give #visibilidrag to a group that needs to work for surviving, because presently, there are not many lucky Drags that do shows, who are hosting steadily at a Club. Let’s put this art into value and let the community evolve. Let them surprise and inspire us. Together, we all may achieve the recognition for the movement and, aboveall, their protagonists.
Translation revised by Jono Kitchens and Carlos Carriedo. Original text by Rubén Antón – January 2019.