VENUS IN FURS
In my own words…
STYLE: Style for me is about aesthetics over gender specifics. From a young age, I was drawn to a very androgynous, conceptual self-image. Prior to my transition, I had a very avant garde, post apocalyptic, Pierrot-punk-look that was extremely gender fluid. I always knew I would eventually transition (or evolve as I think is more accurate) into a more predominantly feminine identity over time. My feminine style still incorporates elements of my boyish punk aesthetics, but more as a detail than a focus. I always looked up to highly individual and slightly confrontational looking women. Wendy O. Williams, Grace Jones, Vivienne Westwood, Shirley Manson, Veruschka, Sulka, Dovima, Flawless Sabrina, and even Paris Hilton are uniquely androgynous in the extreme nature of their feminine style. I find women like them inspiring and very relatable to me. I believe there is an inherent masculinity in hyper-femininity. I ultimately see my gender as unified, albeit societally female at this point. I am most comfortable in the female expression now, however I never felt trapped in the wrong body. My look, beyond gender, is a reflection of my identity to this body as an evolving artform. My expression of style is celebratory; rooted in a sense of spiritual adornment and universal connectivity. All of these principals are evident in my styling and fashion design work, which I’ve specialized mainly in the field of millinery under the name House Of Triviál.
MUSIC: Italo Disco & Hi-NRG has probably been my most affiliated genre. I recently released a 12” single called “I Love Success” https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/i-love-success-single/1420608200 produced by Conrad Kaneshiro out of Mexico City. He is a genius producer in this genre and I really love working with him. We had a club hit in Mexico some years ago with a song called “Take It Like A Man” which was never officially released, but was bootlegged extensively on many Italo/Hi-NRG compilations at the time. This style of music never ceases to amuse and inspire me. It’s such a satisfying and motivational sound. I think it’s just the greatest pop music genre of all time. It’s also inherently punk rock in it’s DIY ethos. Pete Burns from Dead or Alive once said, “When I first heard Divine’s music, I thought, that’s what punk rock should have sounded like.” That pretty much sums up my feelings, exactly. I imagine I will always have elements of that sound in my music in some way, shape or form. It’s also the one genre I feel completely comfortable working with in a totally purist sense.
My latest release is a darkwave/minimal synth collaboration with Mr Pharmacist (aka Gregg Foreman), who is a seasoned creative genius on many levels. We performed together at Lucha Vavoom for Halloween and performed our synthesized version of “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/bela-lugosis-dead-single/1441195317 by Bauhaus, which we just released on itunes/spotify/etc. We have a great musical dynamic and we’re currently working on more material to release in the coming year.
I would coin my overall sound as “Industrial Disco”. Industrial music really informs my approach and core identity musically when I’m self-producing. I try to incorporate subtle elements of punk, noise and metal with an etherial synth, space, Hi-nrg/Italo production value. I have a certain aggressiveness and pop sensibility ingrained in me naturally, which is an extension of my aesthetic/gender identity. My sound is very similar to my style—a glamorous presentation with a feral attitude. Finding that happy medium is the X factor I always seek to achieve. My musical tastes and influences are extremely diverse and I often develop side projects that range more dramatically in style. My most current side project is a band called Princest, which is a “femme-dom-terror-core” cyber punk girl group I founded with my friend Celeste XXX, who is an incredible musician and performance artist. She is the singer and muse for the project, while I play guitar and produce the musical arrangements. It’s a very raw and cathartic project that we’re having a lot of fun with currently. I’m constantly writing new songs in various genres and the challenge (which I love and hate) is figuring out how to thread everything together cohesively. I’ve secretly always wanted to be a rapper and make dancehall music, so I wouldn’t be surprised when that inevitably works it’s way into my sound.
FUTURE: I’m looking forward to releasing a lot of new content across the board this coming year. I have several albums worth of new music I’ve been amassing and have also been writing new material with some very exciting collaborators. Music has always been my main creative focus because of its inherent multi-media incorporation of performance, visual art, wardrobe, installation, graphic design, photography, film and acting. All the years I spent developing these various skills have allowed me to segue into parallel careers in each respective field. Since I began my transition and subsequent move to LA, I’ve been more effectively manifesting all of these elements into a steadily progressive overall creative career. Another professional reason I came to LA was to further develop my acting. I’ve had some wonderful acting opportunities in the last few years which opened me up to a whole new world of creative possibilities. So much has changed in the industry with trans-inclusive representation in film & television. My experience as a performer has led me to embrace this development more seriously as opportunities have become more viable. Upon arriving to Hollywood, I began formally training as an actor and have subsequently grown so much as an artist and spiritual being in the process. The cornerstone of my creative identity will indefinitely continue through my fashion design work. My very specific yet successful niche as a Milliner with House Of Triviál will continue and soon expand into new design territory. I’m currently developing a new product line of ready-to-wear and accessories for production, as well as creative direction and consulting for other brands and artists. I am planning to also formally exhibit my painting, sculpture, and installation work, and publish a book of my photography and writing this coming year. Everything I’ve established to this point in my career has been a one person operation administratively. Moving forward I’m looking to develop a solid team of additional creatives and administrators to build this independent brand into a multi-media creative empire. I believe there is great potential in my overall creative output to establish multiple businesses that could effectively employ many people and have an impactful creative and socio-economical influence on the world. I see my life’s work culminating into a philanthropic and political/spiritual influence through progressive creativity, social outreach and advocacy. I feel a great responsibility to impact the world positively through the gifts that I am blessed to have and share. I know that sounds gay, but it’s true. I’ll never give up until this world has seen the full wrath of my total vision of Love. The yin and yang of life is the idealism and nihilism of humanity. When times are tough we must create through destruction and find Love despite hate. I am a weapon of beauty and love, dripping in desire like Venus in Furs.