‘A Brief History of Drag’ Came Alive Saturday Night in WeHo

(Photo by Tony Coelho)
(Photo by Tony Coelho)

“A Brief History of Drag,” a photographic exhibition chronicling the West Hollywood and Los Angeles drag scenes from the late 1800s through the present, currently is on view at the West Hollywood Library.

But here is another exhibition — of drag performers and their friends who attended the opening of the exhibition last Saturday night. Photographer Tony Coelho captures the people and the vibe of the evening in the photos that follow.

The exhibition will be on display in the WeHo Arts Exhibition spaces at the library during regular library operating hours through June 27 for the city’s annual One City One Pride LGBTQ Arts Festival. West Hollywood Library is located at 625 N. San Vicente Blvd. south of Santa Monica. The opening was hosted by WeHo Arts and One City one Pride.

The opening reception included a group photo of approximately 100 attendees in drag, taken by photographer Austin Young that has not yet been released. The photograph will be part of the exhibition for the duration of the show. A specially designated Drag Wall was also available during the opening reception for members of the community to bring historic photos, programs and other memorabilia of drag artists who have performed in West Hollywood and Los Angeles. Materials that were left became part of the collection of the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives.

“A Brief History of Drag” is presented in collaboration with the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Advocate & Gochis Galleries and CAP UCLA, with support from the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives. The exhibition is curated by Katie Poltz and Jessica-Jean Fowler of the Los Angeles LGBT Center and David John Attyah of Glendale Community College.

The exhibition is part of “Drag Angeles: A Celebration of Los Angeles and West Hollywood Drag Creativity, History, and Art,” which will feature a series of events and exhibitions including Taylor Mac’s “A 24-Decade History of Popular Music: The 20th Century Abridged” performance presented by CAP UCLA at Royce Hall on the UCLA Campus on Saturday.

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