QUEER, ILL + OKAY (QIO) partners with Arts and Public Life at Hyde Park Art Center as part of 2018’s kickoff programming for a Community Conversation with Art AIDS America Chicago and vogue artist, the Mother of House LaBeija, Kia LaBeija. Recently featured as cover artist for Artforum International Magazine and appeared on the premiere television show Pose FX, moderated by the #LetUsBreathe Collective and Black Sex Matters founder Kristiana Rae Colón. This intimate discussion will investigate the tokenization of identities (Blackness, queerness, HIV+) in an age of commercial activism. HIV testing partners Howard Brown Health joins to provide free tests. *This event will have ASL interpreters.
QIO is a public arts program series that began in 2013 by Program Director Joseph Varisco following his own HIV diagnosis. QIO explores the contemporary experiences of underrepresented and underserved communities living with HIV/AIDS.
This year’s QIO grows its mission and impact internationally with programs operating in seven countries with Chicago as the center point. In addition to our annual performing arts showcase this year will also include a week-long workshop led by Karen Finley aptly titled ‘Anti-Workshop’ coordinated with DfbrL8r Gallery at Zhou B Art Center, a short film series in partnership with Visual AIDS at Victory Gardens Theater, a panel on “HIV/AIDS in the Age of PrEP” with Howard Brown Health, and special events including a world premiere performance by Kia LaBeija at the 22nd Annual Dyke March Chicago as well as the highly anticipated international bilingual program with the Los Frikis from Cuba in partnership with Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. QIO’s 2018 programming will conclude with the annual performing arts showcase featuring an array of local, national, and international artists.