Tag Archives: Berlin drag scene

Miss Lola Rose, Muse!

Pink Butterfly headpiece and drawing of Lola Rose by Suzanne ForbesI am so inspired by Berlin drag performer Miss Lola Rose.

Here are two summer works inspired by her style and beauty. I spent much of this spring making this headpiece for Miss Lola, who is working on a piece with a song about butterflies.

Butterfly Headpiece of Holographic vinyl UV resin and Angelina Fantasy Film for Miss Lola Rose by Suzanne Forbes August 2022 6Then I had to take a hiatus as my health crashed, and I finally finished it a week ago.

It’s made of holographic vinyl, UV resin and Angelina Fantasy Film, plus lots of gradient pearls, AB crystals and gold lace.

Butterfly Headpiece of Holographic vinyl UV resin and Angelina Fantasy Film for Miss Lola Rose by Suzanne Forbes August 2022There are a dozen hand-cast pink UV resin butterflies with glitter inclusions, panels of iridescent Angelina Fantasy Film in the laser-cut butterfly frontispiece, and uncountable pearls and crystals on the flowers.

Pink Butterfly headpiece for Lola Rose by Suzanne ForbesThis might be the last big piece like this I do, as it’s harder for me to sit up for long periods.

I’m glad this one came out so well, and I cannot wait to see what Miss Lola does with it.

Lola Rose birthday drawing by Suzanne Forbes Aug 22 2022As for the drawing of Miss Lola, I made it during my sick leave cause I was so inspired I HAD TO DRAW!

I took six weeks of sick leave from my Patreon this summer, my first break in seven years. But on August 22, Miss Lola had her birthday cabaret. The power of Berlin’s drag scene and Miss Lola Rose in particular is so great, I was moved to make this drawing while watching her livestream from Tipsy_Bear_Berlin. Lola went to special lengths to make sure me and other housebound folx could watch, and it meant so much to me to share in the experience.

What a show!!

I am so grateful to my Patreon Patrons, whose monthly financial support makes it possible for me to continue documenting and decorating Berlin performers as a shielding disabled person.


Coming out for the first festival from Queerberg Presents!

Dina and Suryani at Whoriental Festival from Queerberg Presents by Suzanne Forbes July 17 2022I had to go to Queerberg Presents‘ first festival.

It was simply non-negotiable. I had promised Queerberg‘s sweetheart producer, dancer, teacher and performer Prens Emrah that I would make it to one of her outdoor events this year. And a cool snap in Germany while the rest of Europe burns meant an opportunity that might never come again.

Dina doing henna at Whoriental Festival July 16 2022 by Suzanne Forbes sm editedThis is Dina, who does henna art at most Queerberg Presents events.

Her work is exquisite. We had a really nice visit while I sat with her and drew. It’s very hard to get a good scan of these pastel drawings, so the header image shows the drawings as photographed, while this is a scan, above.

Suryani posing at Whoriental Festival July 16 2022 by Suzanne ForbesThis is Suryani, who was so gracious about sitting with me and posing.

She is a graceful dancer and terrific makeup artist. She posed very elegantly and looked marvelous. Swirly skirt!!

Emrah was bustling around as things got started (I arrived at the very beginning of the event), filming the scene and posting it (screenshots of me drawing Dina below!) One of the things I love about her is that he is a wonderful archivist, documenting all the events and sharing them.

After a Queerberg Presents event I always hit the instagram account’s Stories, so I can enjoy some of the action even though I mostly can’t be there.

Emrah always offers to have someone take care of me, he always sees me as both a person and a disabled person.

I knew I would feel safe at this event. I was cared for and seen. There was an awareness team, and whenever I asked someone for help they were there. A crew member walked me to the bathroom for the club’s backyard, but unfortunately it was at the top of three straight flights of stairs, and then apparently more stairs. Those stairs looked like Mount Everest to me.* “Can you keep it?” she asked. “Gonna try and keep it for a while”, I laughed.

KA and Keil Li Divõn at Whoriental Festival from Queerberg Presents by Suzanne Forbes Dec 13 2022I got to meet IRL Keil Li Divõn, who I know online and had drawn IRL at one of the last events I went to in 2020.

Such a treat to draw her again! She is on the right, KA is on left. I asked Keil Li to call me a taxi, as I still don’t own a phone. She called the cab, and then she walked me out to it, made sure I got in it. Listen to her sing here and check out her channel!

Whoriental Festival Dj Baran by Suzanne Forbes March 28 2023Here is the DJ booth with DJ Baran Kok!

You can find Baran here and here.

Here is a list of everything that was scheduled if you would like to be amazed at how much Queer Berlin talent could fit in one venue. Inside the venue, sworker-led panels, bellydance workshops, performances, live music, birthday cake for and stripperformance from beloved muse Chiqui Love, djs, fire-eating from Munetsi aka I-am-Showman, drag shows and more.

And in the sunny, shady backyard, a bazaar with food, music, shops, henna art, a toy raffle from Other Nature Berlin, and tables from beloved Berlin sworker orgs!

The orgs included The Black Sex Workers Collective (@thebswc, website here, twitter here) Trans*Sexworks (@transsexworks, website here, linktree here), Sx Worker Union (@sxworkerunionberlin) and one for org Trans Pride Berlin (@transprideberlin.)

A photo of a colorful collection of t-shirts, zines, stickers and posters from sex worker organizations, with mottos and titles like "trans rent boys", "no cops in our clubs" and "sex workers against fascism".
I got a marvelous haul of solidarity items!

Tabling at an event is exhausting, incredibly hard work. While I support these orgs online with redistribution and sharing, it was really great to actually meet folks doing the work and hand them cash for awesome stuff.

I live in Berlin. I’m well aware that this celebration of BIPOC queer, trans, refugee folx and the sex work many do is vulnerable. Every person I know at this event has suffered so much, and certainly everyone I don’t know too. Virtually no-one is secure in any sense.

I want a world where this event happens every summer, and I also know it’s possible it will never happen again.

So I am doing everything I can to celebrate it and honor the folks involved. I was only there for 2.5 hours, but it meant the world to me, and I’m so grateful to my Patrons, who made it possible.

My Patreon Patrons are the 70 or so folks whose monthly financial support makes it possible for me to continue documenting Berlin performers as a high-risk disabled person.

*I absolutely would have stayed longer if there had been an accessible place to pee. But Europe is not accessible. There is no ADA. (There is the EAA, and in Germany the BITV, but both are really focused on products and services like web access. Europe doesn’t even try with physical building accessibility.)