House Ballroom Documentarians Explore Community Archiving & Resilience At City Lore

June 16, 2024

The House Ballroom community has a rich legacy of resilience, creativity, and chosen family structures that have empowered and sustained its members in the face of adversity.

Preserving this legacy for future generations is a vital task, and the community has several dedicated documentarians and archivists who have taken on this responsibility.

On Thursday, June 20, from 7 – 8:30 PM EDT, City Lore (56 East 1st Street, New York, NY 10003) will host a moderated panel discussion titled “Collective Remembering: Community Documentation & Archiving House Ballroom.”

This event will explore how the House Ballroom community documents and archives its stories and traditions, where these archives live, and how this process serves as an expression of resilience and emancipatory praxis.

The panel will feature four of the community’s most important documentarian-archivists:

  • Icon Ballroom Hall of Famer Luna Ortiz (photographer)
  • Icon Eve Harlowe (photographer/videographer)
  • Icon Felix Rodriguez Milan (videographer)
  • The Rock-socking Noelle Deleon (videographer)

The discussion will be moderated by The Icon Ballroom Hall of Famer Founder Michael Roberson Maison-Margiela.

This event is co-organized by ArtsWestchester, City Lore, and LOFT: LGBTQ+ Center, and is made possible in part through the Mid Atlantic Folk and Traditional Arts – Community Projects program of Mid Atlantic Arts with support from the National Endowment for the Arts.

For more information and updates, follow:

Through this panel discussion, the House Ballroom community will share insights into how they are preserving their stories, experiences, and cultural legacy, ensuring that their narratives are not erased or overlooked in mainstream historical accounts. By documenting and archiving their traditions, the community asserts its right to exist, to be seen, and to have its narratives preserved, ultimately contributing to a more inclusive and emancipatory understanding of history and culture.

Photo credit: 1) The Hamilton Lodge-Ball in Harlem. 2) Harlem Ballroom Newspaper Archives. 3) Source.

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