Friday, September 30, 2011

Carlo Roncancio explores sexuality and gender roles...

The closing party for Carlo Roncancio's show Macho Ma'am at Sin City gallery featured music, fashion and a talk by the artist.
Having developed an interest in fashion photography while studying at the College of Design in Pasadena, Roncancio has worked with Herb Ritts and Bruce Weber and cites Steven Meisel as an important influence. The crossover of fashion and sexuality is the area which most interests Roncancio, who describes the sexually-charged photography campaigns of North Beach Leather and Calvin Klein underwear as being revolutionary in breaking down boundaries.
Working on the Macho Ma'am series has allowed Roncancio to create images based on a long-standing desire to see men evolve into who they really are. Having made many portraits of men in his career, Roncancio says they often open up to him about the pressure they feel to always appear strong and macho, and express a desire to be more relaxed about their sexuality. The male models for this current series are not necessarily lingerie wearers themselves, but Roncancio describes how as he photographed them, they allowed themselves to relax into the moment.
With a vision of a perfect utopia in his head, Roncancio aims to share his vision of a less hostile and judgemental world through his work. "Visually I see things beautifully, I see the best part of a person.... We are all spiritual and sexual creatures of the planet".

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

!Fiesta Las Vegas!

!Fiesta Las Vegas! Latino Parade and Festival celebrates the beginning of Hispanic Heritage Month. The parade headed north on downtown's 4th St and ended at Fremont St for an afternoon of music, dance, arts and crafts and food featuring the diversity of Latin American culture. I missed this parade, so these photographs are courtesy of Matt Couper.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Arctic Monkeys and TV on the Radio

This was the first time I've been to a gig held outside in a hotel pool area. The Cosmopolitan was the venue for a double billing - first up was English band Arctic Monkeys followed by TV on the Radio. Apparently some water is drained from the gently sloping large pool, and a barrier is then put along the water line. As the night wore on, many female patrons discarded their fashionably high shoes and sat cooling their feet in the water. The lighting and sound system were excellent and the large video screen gave great close-ups of the musicians.
The Arctic Monkeys put on a tight, high-energy performance and lead singer Alex Turner had a very charismatic stage presence. They played a number of tracks which had received a lot of air play and the crowd responded enthusiastically.
Brooklyn-based TV on the Radio had quite a different sound, blending a fusion of jazz, soul, and electronica. Lead singer Tunde Adebimpe was also captivating as he never stopped moving and demonstrated a broad range of vocal gymnastics. My only regret was that I wasn't lounging in the pool while listening...

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Steampunk Cause-Play Couture

Steampunk Cause-Play Couture was both a fashion show and a fundraiser for two local causes - the LGBT Community Resource Center and Spread the Word: Nevada Children's Literacy. There was a big turn-out for this event at the recently opened Artifice bar, with many of the audience members dressing in character.
The 11 designers created outfits with either steampunk or cosplay themes, and once the models had paraded the designs, the audience was asked to vote on their favorite outfit by giving donations to the models. The design which raised the most money was 'Lady Mad Hatter' by Wendy Eberhardt-Patrick, modelled by Sherise Marie.
The femcee for the night was Jenn O. Cide as 'Tank Girl' in a costume designed by Crystal Gutierrez. The hosts and organizers of the event were MzMina Kahn, Amber Foley and Brieanna Brock, with support from body painters and a team of stylists. The show was so successful that the organizers plan to make it an annual event.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Las Vegas Pride Parade

The roar of motorcycles heralded the beginning of the 2011 Pride Parade along downtown 4th St. Many floats featured the rainbow colors which have come to represent the colorful diversity of people under the banner of Pride. There was a mixture of community groups, supportive businesses and politicians, and church groups with signs such as "Hate is not a family value" alongside drag queen divas, scantily-clad angels and costumed cart ponies.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Before and After the Pride Parade...

One of the great things about living downtown, is that the parades come to us. Friday night was the annual Pride Parade so I went for a stroll around the block and met some parade participants waiting to hit the streets, and some bystanders enjoying the ambience. My next post will be the parade itself...

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Atari Teenage Riot headline at the Royal Resort

The annual Neon Reverb festival spanned five days and a multitude of venues - this post is from the Saturday night shows at the Royal Resort. There was alt country music inside (not listed on the program) plus a stage set up behind the hotel where breakcore artist Otto Von Schirach (aka King of the Bermuda Triangle) kept the crowd intrigued with some speaker humping and electronic sampling.
German digital hardcore band Atari Teenage Riot were the main drawcard of the evening and from the moment they came onstage they didn't let up on the intensity. Their strong stage presence and political message captivated the audience. The only remaining original member of the group, Alec Empire ended the performance by climbing over the security barrier and mixing with the crowd.

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