PHOTOESSAY: dapperQ’s NYFW “Pursuit” Celebrated Queer Style as a Radical Act Of Resistance and Self-Care

Last Thursday dapperQ kicked off New York Fashion Week with its sixth annual queer style show at Brooklyn Museum. Sponsored by TomboyX and featuring ten designers to celebrate dapperQ’s tenth birthday, the show included more than 70 LGBTQ models and has been called the “one show that truly pushes the boundaries” by former editor in chief of Nylon Gabrielle Korn. The ten designers featured were: Cilium, Claire Fleury, Devon Yan, HALZ, LANDEROS NEW YORK, Shane Ave., Sharpe Suiting x Goorin Bros., Stuzo Clothing, Travis Oestreich, and TomboyX.

This year’s theme went along with Brooklyn Museum’s Pierre Cardin: Pursuit of the Future exhibit as part of the Museum’s year-long “Nobody Promised You Tomorrow: Art 50 Years After Stonewall.” Pursuit aimed to bring to life on the runway how queer style continues to be an important radical act of resistance and self-care.

Autostraddle sent Reneice Charles and Molly Adams to capture the spirit of the show; here are Reneice’s reflections and Molly’s photographs.

The dapperQ fashion show was such an incredible experience that I’m definitely still processing just how incredible it was. I’ve never felt so seen and represented at a fashion event! Every single designer had at least one plus size model/look and there was also a substantial amount of body, racial, and gender diversity across the board. To be able to watch multiple collections go down the runway and truly know that I could own and wear the designs I was seeing too was so special.

I also loved that the energy in the room was one of community and respect. Respect for Anita Dolce Vita and dapperQ, and respect in general for our QTPOC icons, leaders, elders and ancestors without which none of us would have been standing in that room full of vibrant, creative, fashionable queer people. It felt like home – which is not something I ever imagined myself saying about fashion week. I had friends and loved ones on the runway, in the endlessly talented bill of designers, and in the audience, and left with new connections. I also left with a new hopeful vision of what truly inclusive queer fashion is, and how it will only continue to get bigger and better in the future. Here’s hoping this year flies by so I can be living my best life in that space again soon! — Reneice Charles

Claire Fleury backstage

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Molly Adams is an LA-based photographer. You can find documenting life from Afghanistan to Standing Rock to the LA queer nightlife. You can also find her on Instagram.

Molly has written 59 articles for us.


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