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And What? Queer. Arts. Festival (supported by HOME Projects)

House of Ghetto: Black Pride

Until Thursday 26 October 2017
Mezzanine Gallery

In a nutshell

A multimedia installation depicting the founding female members of The House of Ghetto; a Vogue House based in Manchester. 

Go on...

Vogue is a form of stylised dance and performative posture, characterized by model-like poses that arose from the Harlem ballroom scene of the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s/80s by often poor and disenfranchised African American communities, especially gay men. A ‘house’ in these terms is the name given to a collective unit who form a troupe, presided over by a ‘mother’.

For the large portrait series, House of Ghetto mother, Darren Pritchard, working with photographer Cornel Simons, uses a black primer as backdrop and exaggerated flesh tone (not a colour itself, but the absorption of all colours), adding the spectrum of the LGBT Pride flag in the distinctive hairstyles of African diaspora hair weaves, celebrating black gay culture and allowing HOG members to be narrators of their own stories: a reflection of HOG's unique flair and combined strength. 

Also presented is a striking new video installation and accompanying stills for Dark Matter, featuring material from in-production feature documentary Deep in Vogue.

Manchester-based filmmakers Amy Watson & Dennis Keighron-Foster aim to explore the political and social meaning of Vogue as a distinct and legitimate medium of dance. In this extract they focus upon House of Ghetto, made up of largely young black women – the directors renew the battle-cry of the original founders of the form as a call for black empowerment and as a platform of resistance. The film team was struck by the grace, dignity and fearlessness of the performers, in contrast to an oppressive, out-of-touch political regime that fails to acknowledge or support their determined aspirations. Casting the house dancers as afro-futurist goddesses, orbiting one another in an endless black space, they become celestial bodies preforming movements of timeless grace.

Curated by Bren O’Callaghan and Darren Pritchard

Who's Involved

And What? Queer. Arts. Festival. is the capital's only pan-London festival of queer arts, presenting cross-artform work.

HOME Projects at (HOME Mcr) gives an opportunity to encourage a blurring of distinction between gallery, cinema and theatre spaces, straddling both formal and informal presentation.

Why does Rich Mix matter?

'Rich Mix is a natural home for local communities, arty types and cinema goers to come together and celebrate the artistic talents and heritage of London’s  diverse make-up.'

Find out more

@andwhatfest /

Things you should know

Please note: this exhibition will be closed on Thu 19 Oct from 9am - 5pm, as another event is taking place in the gallery. 

This event is wheelchair accessible.

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