If you’ve ever felt that Pride Week lacks options, you’re in luck. A grassroots organization has popped up aiming to supply alternative events to the traditional Pride festivities normally offered in Vancouver.
The aptly named “Alternative Pride Festival” is putting on a myriad of music and art events at small venues over a four-day period during Pride week.
“‘Alternative’ is an arts movement happening in Vancouver,” Festival Director Matt Troy tells Daily Hive.”Its artists taking over alternative spaces, spaces outside the traditional nightclubs, outside of the traditional professional gallery that are grassroots artist-run spaces.”
Alternative Pride kicks off on July 28 with “Trans Pride,” an art showcase curated and produced by trans artists and performers at Gallery 1965, a space on Main Street.
“We feel we’re creating the city we want to live in,” says Troy. “It’s all about having different options that enriches the city.”
“We’re trying to challenge the traditional notions of gender or of hyper-sexuality that come along with Pride.”
Troy says each event is open to everyone – they aren’t interested in labels and they want to create spaces that are inclusive.
“We want to move to a society where it doesn’t matter if you’re a boy or a girl or gay or straight, or trans – I call it the gender future.”
Alternative Pride is being presented by Vancouver Art and Leisure, an artist-run collective that hosts events in unconventional spaces throughout Vancouver. For last year’s Pride week, the group took over a storage locker complex and turned it into a giant temporary bathhouse.
Above all else, artists come first at Alternative Pride, and Troy says they’re paying everyone involved fair wages for their work.
“Our festival has a specific mandate to work with artists and pay them fairly and pay them in a way that’s sustainable for them to do more art – this includes installations, sound, video art, music, DJ-ing, performances, design, photography – all of these things are part of our broader mission to enriching LGBTQ art forms and presentations.”
Here is a full list of events you can expect at Alternative Pride: