“I’m robust as a result of I’ve no selection . . . However I’m fragile. I’m fragile too.”
Yearly, June brings a way of freedom. We’re actually free from layers of cold-weather garments, however we’re additionally free to precise our sexuality in no matter method we really feel attainable. That is (not less than a chunk of) what Satisfaction Month is about. It is easy these days to neglect that Pride stems back to a riot. Sure, a riot of bricks and damaged glass and overwhelmed our bodies — a majority of those bodies being Black and brown.
Tajabone is just one part of NOWNESS’s “Just Dance” series, “genre-busting” movies that search to remodel what dance can accomplish. Working three and a half minutes, the movie, directed by Raphael Chatelaine and Nicolas Huchard, reminds us how each fragile and highly effective the queer group of coloration is. Huchard, a younger Black choreographer and performer from Paris, reached out to Chatelaine, a director whose work focuses on queer themes, to collaborate on this challenge. Mixing choreography, poetry, and style, the movie comes collectively as a celebration of self-expression and tribalism.
Dancers make the sand their stage, balancing softly between confidence and vulnerability of their actions, voguing and serving face. Rapper and poet Mykki Blanco’s phrases bind these actions collectively in a method that cuts by the floor of pleasure and into the depth of Black struggling. The movie is a mournful, but hopeful, name for a world that we can create. This curler coaster of feelings is nothing new to queer individuals of coloration — particularly throughout Satisfaction Month.
Whereas I’ve discovered methods to take pleasure in my very own queerness this month, there’ll all the time be a hesitancy for me to insert myself into queer areas: bars, parades, marches, even drag exhibits. I’ve witnessed the methods this month can put sure queer individuals on a pedestal and the boldness that offers them to separate themselves from our shared historical past. Are the methods Satisfaction is assimilating into mainstream society (please see: megabrand logos changing into “rainbow-fied” for a month) truly the kind of progress queer individuals need? What occurs when June is over and Black queers nonetheless do not know if there’s room for them on this group?
Queers may be racist, too. Shocker. Like many communities, this racism is engrained and buried below a pseudo-paradise. As a younger child, I all the time thought popping out was the top aim. As soon as I did that, every little thing about my id would fall into place. However now, realizing that my very own Blackness can be utilized towards me even amongst queer areas, it is disappointing and heartbreaking, nevertheless it’s additionally the reality. And in that fact is the place our battle continues.
Tajabone is one instance of representing what queerness seems to be like in all its types, and it is the kind of content material that we have to uplift. Just lately, exhibits like Pose and Legendary have emphasised Blackness, in addition to femininity, household, and pleasure. We get to see transness and physique sorts that transcend washboard abs and branded WERK QUEEN T-shirts. For me, these items are a revisitation and remembrance that Satisfaction is not a celebration, it is a trigger for celebration, that trigger being our survival in a world that does not wish to see us.
Because the solar rests on the dancers, and their Black our bodies transfer and worship one another effortlessly, Blanco says, laughing, “That is what freedom looks like, child.”
We have now come a great distance. I’m happy with that. And now we have all the time identified delight as a result of it’s what retains us collectively and alive. However as a pillar of what Satisfaction Month is, our our bodies must be seen — all of them. Tajabone is a calling for these Black our bodies to rise from their struggling and no matter ache is round us to recollect the place we got here from and to level us the place we must be going as a result of we’re, and have all the time been, the one method.