Y2K Welcomes You to cyb3rqu33n
The future is femmebot at local queer, DIY showcase
By Beth Sullivan,
3:00PM, Tue. Nov. 27, 2018
Dear qweeahs of Austin, Y2K Technologies would like to install a new update: “Welcome to cyb3rqu33n 0.1 – your NEWEST and BEST operating system!”
Nevermind the clunky OSs of yesterqueer, this one promises self-relaxation, self-actualization, “hi-impact video installations,” cyberdolls, and a “built-in augmented reality refreshment bar.”
Can you feel the change already?
This Friday, Nov. 30, you will. Austin’s “Desirous Virus Leading the Queer Apocalypse,” aka performer/artist Y2K, will host cyb3rqu33n – pronounced like CyberQueen for those struggling – an all-queer, independent showcase. In its first edition, the event celebrates both emerging and established drag performers, performance artists, pop stars, and DJs. As Y2K reveals, cyb3rqu33n’s aim is not only to highlight “the work of trans and gender nonconforming artists of Central Texas” but to also “nourish a safe space for members of the queer community to meet and have fun together.” (Which, might we brag, Y2K knows a thing or two about – that is, finding a sanctuary in the local queer nightlife scene – as Qmmunity previously covered.)
But cyb3rqu33n isn’t Y2K’s first DIY rodeo. A few years ago, she hosted her now-infamous Super Sweet Sixteen, inspired by the popular MTV series of the early Aughts. Y2K says its similar lineup inspired Friday’s gaggle of provocateurs. “My favorite part [about Super Sweet Sixteen] was all the different types of queers it brought into one space,” she reflects. “I created a queer utopia I hadn't experienced in Austin before.”
And queer utopia vibes abound with the event’s many cyb3rqu33ns. If you’re still having a hard time sussing out who exactly is a cyb3rqu33n, Y2K’s dictionary is here to help: “cy.ber.queen – /ˈsībər.kwēn/ – independent, fierce, strong, warrior-like femmes of cyberspace.” (It also doubles as the title of Y2K’s soon-to-be-released single.) Friday’s lineup includes “ur fave electronic pop star” p1nkstar; pop simulation Boy Sim; a closing DJ set by mid^heaven; drag performers Louisianna Purchase, Kitty Buick, and Lagniappe; plus a whole host of video and art installations. “Ultimately,” summarizes Y2K, “cyb3rqu33n becomes not only a show for people to experience but a stage for attendants to perform in.” It’s also a place for folks to find sexual health resources. Thanks to a connection made through a photoshoot she did with p1nkstar, Y2K received a sponsorship through Gilead (the pharmaceutical company that manufactures Truvada, the only medication approved by the FDA for the PrEP regimen that – when taken correctly – prevents the infection of HIV) so ASHWell will be there offering HIV testing and assistance with obtaining PrEP prescriptions.
When curating the lineup, Y2K says she sought Austin’s “most iconic, influential, femmebot creatives with an eye for fashion, artistry, and an ear for bops and beats,” like Bambi PVC, a “global pop icon” who “loves going out with her friends, making cute beats to bop to, and feels most comfortable on stage because she totally loves the attention.” And then there’s Berlin Fatale, a local, emerging makeup artist who Y2K discovered last year when Berlin did a series of makeup looks inspired by artwork showing at the Blanton. “It was incredible. Artistry like no other.” Y2K adds, “[With] a background in musical theatre, Berlin is one performer you won’t want to miss!”
At a time when local performers and artists, queer or otherwise, have been relying more and more on DIY spaces in the face of closing galleries and rising rents, cyb3rqu33n is an invaluable showcase for queer artists defying all kinds of binaries. At Friday’s event and future cyb3rqu33n showcases, Y2K hopes artists will have the “freedom to be as experimental as they want to be without having regulations that are imposed by other venues or organizers.” She explains, “My main goal is to create a safe space where all are accepted and all can thrive! A cyberworld with no limits! Femme power!”
Yer update has been completed, bb.
Download, install, and revel in cyb3rqu33n this Friday, Nov. 30, 10pm, at 523 Thompson Ln. $10.