Voguing means community, self-expression, and power to be who you are or aspire to be. The dance style has remained an exceptional means for queer bodies to tell their story and feel empowered through self-expression. In many ways, voguing is a superpower, an incredible ability to change yours and other peoples’ lives.
Voguing is a highly stylized, modern house dance, inspired by the poses of the models featured on Vogue magazine, as well as by Egyptian hieroglyphs, martial arts, and gymnastics. It evolved from the New York ballroom culture of the 1960s, which was created by the Black and Latin LGBTQIA+ Harlem community as a response to the constant hatred and discrimination they experienced on the street and within their own family. Seeking shelter from a hostile society, many trans* and queer bodies began creating safe spaces to exist in and be fully themselves. This is how balls and ‘houses’ emerged; as support systems and self-chosen families for queer and racial Others. Soon, houses began competing against each other in many creative and expressive categories, with voguing becoming the most prominent one. Now a global phenomenon, voguing has remained an exceptional means for queer bodies to tell their story and feel empowered through self-expression. In many ways, voguing is a superpower, an incredible ability to change yours and other peoples’ lives.
Half a century later, the voguing community is fully alive, stronger than ever. The culture has evolved and so have the dance styles, shifting from more masculine and sharp movements to softer and more delicate, feminine poses. However, one thing still persists: the establishment of a safe space where everyone can be their own, authentic self.
In tribute to voguing and its values, we teamed up with Lambda BB e.V. and STUDIO O for this collection. Lambda BB e.V. provides a sense of community and safe space for queer teenagers and adolescents in Berlin, Germany; helping young lesbians, gays, bi-, trans*, inter* and queers between 14 and 27 to express themselves and be a part of a world that understands and fully accepts them. Similarly, STUDIO O believes in freedom and the power of creativity. Together, we want to send an empowering message across: we are all superheroes.
Find out more about the cooperation between STUDIO O x Lambda BB e.V. here.