Program Type: 
Community Engagement
Co-Curated by Noise Pop
Noël Noir
December 10, 2010


Is Christmas making you cringe? Has Hanukkah begun to haunt you? Are you already sneaking swigs from that quart of eggnog in the mini-fridge under your desk?

If you're more interested in tipping your glass than trimming the tree, then don your gay apparel and douse your seasonal sorrows at Noël Noir, YBCA's first Un-holiday fundraiser! More Tim Burton than Frank Capra, Noël Noir will whisk you away into the season's seamier (and sexier!) underbelly.

See you under the mistletoe!

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  • Noël Noir
    Dec 10, 2010 9:00pm
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Curator Statement

Six holidays ago, I was in Paris and the holiday window displays were too cool. Instead of Jingle Bell cheer and red and green and tinsel, it was diamond ice spikes, enchanted forests, and sexy Pagans in blood velvet and bodices. It was all so… Noël Noir. Beyond the yummy sinister aesthetics was a reminder of Christmas' pagan origins. It was also very Suck-it-Santa-and-Fake-Cheer which made sense given the aftermath of 9-11 and the fact that the world was at war. The Parisian windows seemed to be suggesting that the world IS the winter forest and we are wandering in it, as powerful as we are vulnerable. Oh, such terrible beauty! Nina Simone and James Baldwin got it right for moving to Paris.

It's just done differently in Paris—ideas, values, even holidays. Bay Areans also do things differently. Last December, YBCA collaborated with the San Francisco Mime Troupe for an anti-consumerist holiday workshop. In the workshop, participants used guerilla street theater tactics to illumine the comedy of consumerism and fake holiday cheer during Union Square's busiest time. It was all so Mime Troupe and so very San Francisco with its Suck-it-Convention and social consciousness-style message. But while Bay Areans will be the first to protest a cut Christmas tree, we still gather our selected family of Burners, Programmers, Slackers, Queerdos, & Artists around vegan eggnog and the traditional soy turkey.

Today, our worsening economy is forcing us to make choices about what's essential. And given all the humbling changes around us, it is even more critical that we huddle together and stay with one another to recognize and celebrate what matters most. Our declining economy is forcing us to deal with who we are and what we're about. We are a Bay Area that values experiences over things. We are about evolving traditions, rituals, and celebrations that connect with the past and the future. The Bay Area is not about doing it like everyone else, so in the midst of what seem to be our bleakest time, we will not forget to celebrate.

On Dec 10, don your best frock and antique leather for THE Winter Gala of the Year. Think Tim Burton's Holiday Shindig or Edward Gorey's Feast of Lights. This Un-Silent Night is brought to you in collaboration with Noise Pop and features performances by an eclectic assemblage of local favorites-- Crown City Rockers, Jill Tracy, Sonny and the Sunsets, Ejector, Honey Soundsystem and H.U.N.X. Thrill to Nunway Noir, a runway fashion show featuring local designers and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. Journey into the Queer Occult in our Screening Room. A tantalizing array of adult beverages, scandalously themed photo ops, and witchy desserts will keep you captivated until last call. The funds from Noël Noir ticket sales also support YBCA's free arts programs.

—Joël Tan, Director of Community Engagement