A New York nightlife-based art collective and event production duo will end their practice together, with their final collaboration taking place on New Year’s Eve.
Back in 2014, HuffPost Queer Voices engaged in a long-term examination of the NYC nightlife community both historically and today called “After Dark.” The Culture Whore, made up of Dream Dommu and Paul Leopold, were featured in this series, and just over two years later the pair will end their collaborative practice and pursue careers as individual artists.
“The Culture Whore (TCW) really happened because we loved the community we found going out and wanted to make it more accessible,” the pair told HuffPost. “There’s definitely been a renaissance in New York nightlife over the past few years, specifically queer nightlife and centered around Brooklyn, and we’re proud that TCW has been a big part of that. There is incredible art being made in New York City every day by truly brilliant queers, and TCW has always been a platform to bring that to a wider audience.”
Over the past four years, TCW has proved an important part of the queer art scene in Brooklyn, providing space for identity exploration and creative production in spaces that are largely DIY or underground. From raves that deconstruct the queer themes of Harry Potter to events questioning the nature of surveillance in the digital age, TCW’s events have proved important to a large number of the queer people navigating this outer borough.
As Leopold and Dommu move on to differing paths, the pair emphasized that it’s crucial queer nightlife in New York continue to revolve around the DIY.
“The underground is really about space. We need to support non traditional spaces so that they can survive,” Dommu continued. “Always choose a DIY space over a traditional bar or club. Sometimes people take for granted that the underground is just there when you want it, but if we all don’t support the underground it could literally be priced out.”
As for the legacy of The Culture Whore and its memory within the historical consciousness of this community, Dommu and Leopold emphasized that TCW has always been larger than the two of them.
“We want TCW to be remembered as being bigger than us, a community and a moment in time that honored the past while shaping the future,” they said.
Check out photos from previous Culture Whore events below and head here to read more.
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