Local Queer Artists Shine At Feminist Spoken Word Tour

Apr. 14, 2015 / By

The vibe at the beautifully eclectic MADE in Long Beach boutique in downtown Long Beach last week was equal parts rowdy, uplifting, and unyieldingly hilarious, as some of the best and zaniest LGBTQ artists shared their stories with an eager crowd.

At one point before the show had begun, a voice in the crowd professed, “I’m so glad I don’t have to go all the way to Portland for something like this.”

The nationally touring spoken word showcase, Sister Spit, held an evening of righteous laughs and a bevy of “queer and outsider writers” for a night of spoken word performance. According to their mission, the event brings together audiences with the best in underground “queer and queer-influenced artists of all genders.”

Amongst the eight artists were Myriam Gurba and Griselda Suarez– two insanely talented local artists.

Myriam Gurba’s list of credits include, Dahlia Season, the poetry collection Wish You Were Me, as well as several self-published ‘zines and chapbooks. Griselda Suarez’s work is equally impressive as she’s currently editor for the Culture and Arts section on xQsi Magazine and has been published in numerous anthologies including the Acentos Literary Review and Sinister Wisdom Journal. Suarez also teaches Chicano-Latino Studies at California State University Long Beach.

Amid the frenzy the two feminist artists shared their thoughts with VoiceWaves about what it means to be an artist living in Long Beach and how the city’s influenced their works. The video above highlights their work and connection to the city.

“I definitely feel like Long Beach is super-duper present in my work…” says Gurba. “…For me place is a really important muse and I love it when a place finds it’s way into a work of art…”

And it’s true, Long Beach continues to gain momentum as an emerging city that embraces both it’s outstanding LGBTQ community and provides artists a stimulating place to create and share their work.

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Thomas Lick (Vanguard)

Thomas Lick also goes by the artist name Vanguard and is an aspiring filmmaker and performer with hopes of someday becoming the next Orson Welles. He spends his journalistic efforts focusing on the underdog and highlighting social issues. He is also a huge fan of urban design and all things Disney.