Years ago, from 2006 to 2009, the then ‘Belgian Lesbian & Gay Pride Parades’ (BLGP) in Brussels were traditionally concluded with a party in four different locations at AB. The men took over the Main Hall and the women took over the club. They were huge nights that went on until six in the morning, with unparalleled alcohol consumption but practically no problems because of it. The AB reflects back on those parties with warmth and also learned a lot from the experience. It’s currently quite a quest to be a house of culture that takes on the responsibility of highlighting the queer & LGBTQIA+ community in an inclusive manner every day of the year.
'Out in the street'
In 2015 the Rainbow House, City of Brussels and AB worked together on a project in the Lollepotstraat. German artist Ralf König and Greek portrait artist Fotini Tikkou painted a 40 metre long comic strip on the walls of AB, it consisted of various drawings and displays uncomplicatedly, with humour and jest, what the LGBTQIA+ community is confronted with. The message of the work is: show that you must be able to be yourself in all public places. 'Out in the street' was the first permanent mural on the theme of LGBTQIA+ in Europe.
Three years ago, there was some criticism of the typical caricatural drawing style. German cartoonist Ralf König is best known for his typical caricatural drawings and popular gay cartoons.
König responded to the fuss at the time with the statement: “Every irony, every satirical exaggeration, every self-ironic view of the scene is an immediate attack on anyone. I hate the thought of living in such a society: grim, aggressive, always looking for a motive, explaining itself and its world-view as the only valid one. I shrug and keep doing my thing.”
Pride Month at AB 2021
This month we color various events around Pride Month! On May 20, AB will hold a discussion in collaboration with The Belgian Pride on this year's official theme #WECARE: Physical and mental health within the LGBTQIA + community. And on May 11, we will organize a live stream with multidisciplinary artist and activist Jaouad Alloul. And even our podcast Guestlist is all about music and queer culture this time!
Text: Lara Decrae
Pictures: Lien Peters