Atlanta Radical Faeries are ready to turn loose on their annual summer solstice celebration and have fun, but they’re out to educate too. Here’s how to Faerie that look, and that attitude, to join them.
To start, there is no dress code. Come on, now. Anything other than “anything goes” would be so un-Faerie like. This year’s event, dubbed A Midsummer’s Wet Dream, is sure to draw its typical attention, but some of the event participants are taking the opportunity to also shed light on the Faerie way. You see, Faeries are about way more than their nature-inspired ensembles. Radical Faeries are a way of life, a state of being.
Faerie that look
Queer Atlantans Melissa Coffey, Andrew Fernandez and Jonathan Alexander (second photo, l-r) strip down and suit up in Wussy mag’s preview of Saturday’s day-to-night-to-morning fun. They also take the opportunity to offer Faerie insight to go along with their photo shoot, and we take notice.
Be gone, stereotypes and preconceptions
While the Faeries are busy letting loose on Saturday, they may also be busting some stereotypes for the long haul like the ones Wussy founder Jon Dean had, he writes.
Whenever I was asked to attend, my mind would immediately jump to season two of “True Blood,” when the evil maenad Maryann turns the town of Bon Temps into one outdoor orgy. I'm a fairly reserved person and I mostly prefer the indoors, so how could I enjoy myself amongst a group of free-spirited hippie gays? Will I be forced to indulge in some peyote-induced nature walks? Maybe I misjudged them.
Indeed. Not that the revelry aspect should be ignored. A little Bacchanalia (third photo) can be expected and encouraged.
When the beat goes on at the Arts Exchange on Saturday, be prepared for everything from clothing swaps to heart circles, from forums to a dance party. View Saturday’s full noon – 3 a.m. schedule and psyche up to run amok in a safe space.
“Safe space means I can breathe fully, I don't have to explain everything about myself with my words or my image,” Coffey tells Wussy. “I can love myself as it is, and if others want to, they can also.”
The Faerie Way
As you can tell in our full Midsummer Night galleries here and here, losing your shirtl and your razor are just the tip, and not the true essence, of the Faerie experience. Take pride in your queer self, take inspiration from your deepest connection with the universe and nature, and allow others to do the same.
“What I've taken away from it is the feeling of being surrounded and embraced by other queers who truly appreciate each other,” Alexander (fourth photo, courtesy Wussy) tells Dean in the interview. “Total acceptance and authenticity. “
Last year’s Faerie No-Rules Rules of Engagement still apply, but suffice it to say that you are a go for shirtless, as well as glitter, flowers, chainmail and fur. The proverbial Faerie wings? Definitely. Lady parts? If you got ‘em, flaunt ‘em. All are welcome. Check out a few of our favorite Faeries photos below to psych up for Saturday.