Kensington Market in Toronto is in for a treat tonight! A queer dance party and book launch in one, held at the infamous Double Double Land, will be thriving from 10pm till late, April 22 2015.

Author Susana Vargas has recently published a book of photographs and essays on “highly sexualized subjects taking centre stage within the images, reversing the power dynamics between the photographer and the photographed”. Who are the subjects? “Mujercitos” – a term coined during the mid 1960s as a synonym for “effeminate man”. Vargas completed a Phd at McGill University (2013), and is currently completing a SSHRC funded postdoctoral research at Instituto de Investigaciones Estéticas, UNAM. Her research maps the zones of tensions between Anglo North American theories of performative gender/sex and their Latin American counter part, focusing on Mexico.

Susana Vargas has travelled from Mexico City for launches in both Toronto and Montreal. Describing her work, Vargas states that in the book “Mujercitos are shown posing and smiling provocatively at the photographer of the definitive example of the nota roja periodical Alarma, published weekly between 1963 -1986. The book argues that these photographs work as a site of resistance to and a subversion of many different forms of violence in Mexico.”

The event tonight, hosted by me (conveniently the venue located in my actual back alley), features DJs playing cumbia, electrocumbia and dance hits (Ketsup/Katie Stelmanis, Daniel Vila, Kaleb Robertson) visuals by Kate Young + Romar Johnson, Mezcal cocktails at the bar and a very special performance from V ∆ N E S S ∆ (Vanessa Fischer of No Dynamics and Lioness).

About the Author

Judy Virago is a transgender writer and performer living in Toronto. A background in theatre, activism and government social policy has informed her interest in transgender rights and visibility. She is the co-founder of the queer art collective The House of Filth and was voted "Runner Up" for Now Magazine's Best Toronto Drag Queen 2015. She takes her inspiration from fierce, fabulous creatures who have soared to stardom, fallen from grace, and clawed their way back to the top.