Faggotry is how Hazkel Brown describes is art, which explores religion, sexuality and racial identity. The Costa Rican native who moved to NYC as teenager lives by the quote, “You Never Stop Learning” and explains the importance of being visible.
“HOMOSINNER THE HOMO IS NOT THE SINNER.”
YOUTH and ROLEMODELS
How was your youth, did you have a role model growing up?
My youth was quite peculiar, I lived in an indigenous reserve in Limon, Costa Rica for beginning of my teenage years but later found myself living in NYC. Moving to NYC showed me the broad spectrum of things like fashion, sexuality, gender identity, arts, to name some of them. Having the freedom to explore these things in ways that I never could have fathomed. My biggest role model would have to be one of the strongest femme energy I know, my mother. She has inspired my artistry, my fashion and the fight for gender and racial equality I have in me.
Do you remember your first crush and who would be your pipe dream boyfriend?
My first crush came to be after watching ‘Y Tu Mama Tambien,’ a film by the Mexican filmmaker, Alfonso Cuaron. I was captivated by Gael Garcia Bernal’s performance, the way in which he was so comfortable exploring his sexuality and his versatility as an actor to play roles that for the average cisgender heterosexual male actor is not able to play at times. His vast knowledge on Mexican history, his humanitarian work and his spectacular artistic career makes him my pipe dream boyfriend as well.
Was there a formative experience that influenced you to come out?
Unlike many folks in the community, I had the privilege to never have the need to come out as my sexuality was always apparent and un questioned.
What advice would you give to your adolescent self?
If I could give my adolescent self an advice it would be, BLACK IS BEAUTIFUL, BLACK IS BEAUTIFUL AND YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL.
A quote that best describes your outlook on life?
A quote that best describes my outlook on life would have to be “You never stop learning.”
“My artwork can be described as, faggotry.”
Your artistry is bold and you recently changed your instagram to Homosinner. Can you tell us about that and the significance of being visible and stepping on toes ?
My art making tends to focus on issues that affect me based on my racial background, sexuality and gender identity. Homosinner, has been something that has been present on some of my recent work as part of an ongoing collaborative series that started with my dear friend Josh Spelman-Hall. The series is composed of theory surrounding sexuality and gender as well as religion, whilst finding the best medium to showcase the theory that we have developed. Changing my Instagram name Homosinner to be was acknowledging the marriage between the two as identity that I decide to show as mine.
What socio-politcal issues need our attention most and how does your art play a role in the advocating these issues?
As a queer person of color I understand the role that race has on all socio-political issues that affect folks like myself. Race, sexuality and gender are the three socio-political issues that I explore mostly on my work by advocating my experiences and how these three issues have affected me, reason why from time to time I take it to my social medium platforms to create a discussion on these issues on a platform that I procure to be a safe space for those entering it.
How does your history and cultural identity influence your artwork?
My history and cultural identity influence my artwork in every process of it. My history is what I have imbedded in me and my cultural identity is what makes me a whole. You can see the presence of Latinx culture throughout my work referencing “platanos” a lot and often times using it as a medium, my historical background is something that until a few years ago I began to learn more about whilst doing research for some of my work and discovering this history has influenced the artwork I make as a result.
In one word how would you describe your art?
My artwork can be described as, faggotry.
Your Go-To track for exercising?
My Go-To track for exercising has been a mix of Raingirl by Yaeji, Pom Pom by Ariel Pink and Recto Verso by Paradis.
“My goal for 2018 is to finally get the bigotry out of the White House.”
What have you learnt about yourself this year?
This past year I learned that nothing is set in stone, that I have ownership of my identity and choose how I present myself or how I can control how others view me and interact with me by masking it, as I have been recently doing with my optical illusion makeup looks.
Are there any young artists that make you excited for the future?
I have hope for the art world, artists like Shug (@shug2k18) and Mister Wallace (@wallacewallacewallace) unapologetically being their queer selves in their music as well as their online presence, as well Chicago based model and artist Mikayla Brown (@nectaryear) who uses film imagery in her work exploiting what a film could be, Kristian Kirk (@kristiankirk) who explores the relationship between the body/fashion and performance art, Pat (@tigermomdragonlady) and Bailey (@zah) which with their use of makeup explore their Southeast Asian in a manner that honors it.
Goals for 2018?
My goal for 2018 is to finally get the bigotry out of the White House.
Do you have any future projects that you can tell us about?
I have a couple of projects I am currently working on, a couple that I could share with you guys are a mini queer clothing series that mixes Grindr encounters and religion that I am developing with Project Runway Season 16 contestant and my good friend Aaron Myers, a mini capsule of jewellery work and a film, which unfortunately I cannot say much about but just know, it will be homo and it will most definitely be sinful.
What would you graffiti on the back of a toilet door?
The only thing I would ever graffiti or tag on the back of a toilet door would have to be HOMOSINNER THE HOMO IS NOT THE SINNER.