A pioneering founder of the West Coast House/Ballroom Scene, and founder of House of AWT, Sean Milan hosts “The Masc for Mask Finale,” a ball open to all event attendees who are willing to walk the park’s overhead runway. Guest judges include: Jaylen Marc Jacobs, Gravity Jacobs, and Kiki Xtravaganza, with commentary by Torie Balmain. There are three trophies at stake; the categories include All-American, Old Way Vogue, and Masc for Mask. To start the show, Kiki Xtravaganza, an important member of New York’s House of Xtravaganza, walks the line, elegantly flaunting, then shedding layers of clothing, revealing rhinestones, bold patterns, satin and shine. Milan sings "Let Me Call This B*tch,” a relentlessly repeated refrain that sets the pace of the show. Underground ballroom culture is historically, and actively, comprised of primarily queer and trans people of color who highlight the performative nature of gender. Queer enactments subvert normative masculinities and femininities, and demonstrate their complicities with the privileges of whiteness. This ball generously invites audiences to experience the collective mobilization of many house/ballroom shows, demonstrating how gender subversion is a celebration.
Sean/Milan™ Garcon is a performance artist, advocate, and one of the pioneering founders of the West Coast House/Ballroom Scene. Sean has constructed programs that bridge artistic creation, HIV education, and wellness development for queer and trans youth of color in Los Angeles. This includes founding and producing the annual Ovahness Ball, the longest-running Ball on the West Coast, for 14 years (2006-2019).
His latest achievement/role is Founder of The House Of AWT Project, whose mission is to facilitate young LGBTQIA+ people of color working side-by-side with professional artists to gain free studio training in various art forms including dance and choreography, audio/video production, fashion design, music production, and street art. The project is based around an individualized artist development model to help each young person create a finished work that they can share with the community and use for future professional opportunities. For more info regarding The House Of AWT, please visit HouseOfAWT.org.
Sean Milan has also served as an artist-in-resident at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City, in conjunction with painter Laura Owen’s mid-career retrospective. Through his performance and advocacy work, Sean/Milan™ has partnered with a variety of institutions including REACH LA, Men’s Health Foundation, Macy's, 356 S Mission Gallery, The Box Gallery, Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, Alliance for California Traditional Arts, Marciano Arts Foundation, Los Angeles Philharmonic, City of West Hollywood Arts Commission, USC, UCLA, Occidental College, Cal State Long Beach, Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation, Magic Johnson Foundation, World of Wonder, LA Pride, and DTLA Proud.