|Or to say it more thoughtfully, I’m forgiving who I am!|
– Believe me, I’m not what I thought
– I’m a fabricator
– I’m rewriting my story
– I can give anything and everything at every moment
– Screw Sean, Billy Kizy’s (verbs will come out of nowhere)
– I never had a single drag name anyway
– The naiveté of this letter rings for me and I hope it resonates with you
Those closest to me have revealed that I’m having a kind of renaissance or new beginning. They may believe that I’m uncovering the true Sean, or Billy or Sean Billy or Sean Billy Kizy. He’s finally being honest with himself, thank god!
This newsletter is truly coming out of that feeling. But what I haven’t shared is that my ambition is to live in this space for as long as I possibly can, then again as soon as I can. I’m infatuated with destroying my identity and re-building.
I LOVE to build. And you all know I love a construction site even more than a completed structure. They’re loud, they’re colorful, they’re messy, they’re organized chaos, they’re constantly changing, they’re full of conflicting characters, they’re incomplete. Ahhhhh, how gorgeous. May I never live in a completed structure!
Don’t worry, I have a clear pursuit to cross that finish line. I stood strong for over four years on a single residential tower from concept through close-out at SHoP among other buildings I architect’ed and am known as a ‘finisher’ at UAP where they send me in as project manager to take over and finish colleagues’ projects where I get bumpy relationships resewn and 25′ tall aluminum wishbones cemented in Los Angeles.
So how am I redefining identity for myself?
I’m tackling the topics on my instagram @seanbillykizy this week with videos and images for easily digestible content. Or continue scrolling for some fodder right now!
I’d also love to hear from you by email, comment or DM. I want nothing more than to start conversations and collaborations. Please don’t hesitate to ask a question that have been sparked by this newsletter or anything else you’d like to surface. And please share your feedback. This newsletter will certainly take on many forms as it continues. So here we go!
Furlough and Pandemics
I’m one fortunate person and have so many people, circumstances and american dollars to thank for that. I’ve been given the gift of being free of work and free to pursue this project along with a few others I’ll talk about in the coming weeks. For that I’m truly grateful. …pause… This is the definition of wealthy I’ve always admired. I’m living it. What I’m fascinated with now is how COVID19 will permanently change our spaces, our practices and how we literally move our bodies.
- Urban areas may no longer be safe or cool. And that’s why I’m staying! The creative class has incredible skills and is NOT performing with the agility needed as emblemized in Manila.
- I’m no longer getting next to you, but then again…I occasionally want to.
- Not with the “self-protectionist” attitude the very rich are unsurprisingly displaying at the moment.
- Or with the motive to buy a $80 private zoom room for a ‘hot’ online party
- I’m craving that glorious energy only felt by large groups of people coming together. Whether that be a temple, stadium, park or more enticing, a warehouse under lights designed to make us seizure and music so loud our words lose meaning.
- Professions are getting especially digital. Let it be the path forward for relishing in those key moments we do come together. Queer Art hosted a panel that I participated a week ago called ‘Space Jam: Reimagining Resilient Cutlural Spaces.’
- I love Queer Art’s mission but in my opinion it fell flat because it wasn’t grounded in action or resources.
- It was successful in vocalizing the failures of cultural institutions to serve the artist community though I think the root of this issue is the role artists have to take on to fund our projects.
- I’d be happy to discuss it further with anyone interested.
Totems and Temples
Speaking of temples and parties, God hasn’t had this much attention around the globe as a unified front dare I say ever. Nor has meditation, cooking or pornography. And the people of this world have never connected so much before. All this after the frightening contraction we all felt a few weeks ago. Wow, wow, wow.
What an incredible global shift (*gift) that we’ve been given. It’s reverberations haven’t nearly been felt. This is the tremor before the quake (*wake *woke). We are redefining how we define ourselves as a united global people or divided front. That is what I believe the American presidential election will be about this November and that is what we are each individually addressing every day. I’m in love with this idea and my current art practice is focused on building a space for inclusion. I’m building a temple of my own and the textiles for its adornment. (see IG for more images) I’m healing from the inside out and my skin has never looked better. But more on skincare, chronic illness and beans at a later time.
Textiles and Architecture
Textiles and architecture are my language for writing my story. They’re feminine and masculine, soft and strong, domestic and corporate, they’re any girl’s skirt and Shigeru Ban’s too. It’s queer to me though it doesn’t have to be for you.
Architecture is enclosure. Enclosure originated in textiles from teepees to yurts to structures long before those. Textiles and architecture are a language because they’re a form of drawing, because they construct envelopes around our bodies in the form of weighted blankets and glass towers, because they create facades for capitalism and dictators alike, because they communicate with lines and points just like so many written languages do.
Master writer and weaver, Anni Albers is my guiding star. She’s come back into my life after unexpectedly seeing her show at the Tate in London in 2018 when travelling through for work. More on Saudi Arabia in another letter. In the meantime, On Weaving is my manifesto to master a craft for fabricating a language that engulfs us together.
With care, Sean
“I feel like every year of my life has gotten progressively better. And it doesn’t have to do with drag, or money or success. It just has to do with the more you fabricate the life you get to live, the happier you are.”
– Trixie Mattel in her documentary Moving Parts on Netflix
- Michael Singer, The Surrender Experiment and The Untethered Soul (I’ve crushed so hard on these)
- Gottfried Semper, The Four Elements of Architecture
- On Weaving by Anni Albers
- Eckhart Tolle (everything he’s ever written or spoken)
- Oprah (be mindful and just focus on her SuperSoul Sunday interviews)
- Deepak Chopra, Meta Human