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December 5, 2021 11:00 am - April 4, 2022 4:00 pm
Photos by Trevor Beaty; design by White Space
December 5, 2021 – April 4, 2022
Homecoming Queen: The Wonderful World of Utica Queen
Curators: Brian Dukerschein and Zoe Cinel
There are two ways you can experience Homecoming Queen!
- In person during gallery hours, Wednesday – Sunday, 11am – 4pm. Purchase tickets at the front desk upon arrival.
- Virtual access is available 24/7 by purchasing a ticket on Eventbrite with the button below.
Homecoming Queen invites visitors to explore the wonderful world of Utica Queen, star of Season 13 of the Emmy-winning pop-culture phenomenon RuPaul’s Drag Race. The exhibition features garments, accessories and original design sketches by Ethan Mundt (Utica Queen), editorial photographs of the Drag Race alum by photographers Ben Seagren, Dan Little, Eric Magnussen, Liam James and Trevor Beaty, and a short documentary highlighting Mundt’s background and creative process by Tatyana Kurepina.
Homecoming Queen is the first-ever exhibition that positions a drag performer as a visual artist via their creations. The show features elements of everything from fashion and photography to pop culture and gender expression. Through this exhibition, the Art Center demonstrates its commitment to provide a space for communities that have been historically marginalized, like the LGBTQIA+ community, to see themselves represented and celebrated as talented Minnesota artists.
The exhibition highlights the impressive output of Mundt’s burgeoning career, from the capstone “Balloon Bride” dress from his senior year in college to creations realized for the Drag Race competition — including iconic looks such as the “Sleeping Bag” dress featured by Vogue — to amazing costumes designed after the show. Each one of the 20 garments presented in the exhibition is rich in articulated references to queer culture and historical religious symbols. These original creations showcase a world of duality: the world of Utica Queen, where images of joy and sparkle coexist with the darker and fantastical side of Mundt’s imagination.
More About The Exhibition
Mundt was born and raised in Utica, MN, a small town of less than 300 people roughly 30 miles east of Rochester. Upon graduating from high school, Mundt moved to St. Paul, MN, to attend Hamline University, where he earned dual degrees in fine art and theater design. It was at Hamline that Mundt started exploring drag, and before long he was performing regularly at venues throughout the Twin Cities. Then came Drag Race, where he quickly won the hearts of fans across the world with his artfully inspired looks. Today Mundt continues to delight his more than 460,000 Instagram followers with his creativity. “I hope this show brings a lot of joy to everyone who sees it and inspires them to live life a little more freely and to look at their fellow humans with more kindness,” says Mundt.
During the four-month run of the show, the Art Center will host a variety of programming events with local and state-level LGBTQIA+ groups to facilitate public discussion and exploration on many topics, including queer artistry and culture, gender expression, personal stories, and community development.
Thank you to our talented friend Tatyana Kurepina for creating this video. Learn more about Tatyana on her Instagram: @Tatyana.Kurepina
Get your official Utica Queen merch at My Best Judy Merch site: https://mybestjudymerch.com/collections/utica
This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.