The Mayor of Folsom Street:
The Life and Times of Daddy Alan Selby, aka Mr.S
curator: Jordy Jones
Center for Sex and Culture
6:00 – 10:00pm
Exhibit runs: June 6 – July 31
Saturday, July 12th, 7pm
Performance by “Queer David” Lawrence
Raucous Red, Brilliant Blue: A Tribute to Daddy Alan Selby
The Mayor of Folsom Street! Alan Selby is history. Come take a look. More dominant and kinky than strictly sadistic, he was the “S” in Mr. S. Leather. He was the original San Francisco Leather Daddy, and the unofficial “Mayor of Folsom Street.” He was a tireless activist and fundraiser and an incorrigible flirt who mentored hundreds and fucked thousands. Those he knew became better, stronger, more knowledgeable and more powerful for having known him. Selby was an Englishman who proudly became an American. He was a gentleman and a Leatherman. He lived his life with good humor, courage, compassion, generosity and grace. He adopted the City of San Francisco, and it, in turn, adopted him. This exhibit marks the 10th anniversary of his passing. Artifacts, archival material and art!
Got stories? Please do tell! His biography will be published by Palm Drive Media and will launch in February, 2015. Contact @drjordyjones.
Jordy Jones is a native Californian and a long-time San Francisco resident now residing in rural Mendocino County. He is an independent scholar, curator, artist and activist. He received his Ph.D. in Visual Studies, with an emphasis in Critical Theory, from the University of California Irvine, and holds an M.A. in Museum Studies from SF State. Recent curatorial projects have included the exhibits Little Presents: Prints and Polaroids from the Warhol Foundation, and Tough Love: A Half-century of Masculine Homoerotic Imagery from the San Francisco Bay Area. Somatechnics has published his article A Martyr in the Archive: The Life and Afterlife of Harvey Milk’s Suit. In January 2015, he will present his paper Willie’s Bully: Reflections on the Photographic Representation of Young Male Social and Sexual Violence at the American Historical Association conference in NYC. His current research includes critical auto/biography, community history, curatorial and archival studies, homomasculinity, psychoanalysis and photography. He serves on the boards of the Queer Cultural Center and The 15 Association, both based in San Francisco. @drjordyjones blogs as Gay Highwaymen.
William “Queer David” is an American artist, designer and activist, who luckily began his journey here on earth on Mother’s Day in the “Summer of Love.” Raised by conservative Mormon parents in the desolate Texas panhandle, his early education took place at a Texas agriculture and sports oriented school. Suffering from a heart disorder he was excused from sport and animal husbandry. Instead, he read and performed poetry, and interpreted prose for academic competition. He excelled, becoming known as the Shade Tree Boy. He always found a way to escape the barren reality of his surroundings. Earliest influences were hippies, bikers and antinuclear activists. He thought they were the most beautiful people he had ever seen.
Moving to Los Angeles in the mid ‘80s, he attended the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) and worked as a fashion illustrator for the couture industry. In 1989 he became head designer for Studio 2000, the company that made MC Hammer style pants for the masses. Seriously joking, Queer David says, “I guess I’m sort of a Godfather of Hip Hop street style.”
He left in 1990 to start his own fashion accessories line. Eventually, David Lawrence Accessories were sold private label for chain stores in practically every mall in America. AIDS took the lives of many of his friends, mentors, and co-workers. He was angry, upset and began discovering ways to express calls for immediate action, becoming an organizing member of Queer Nation L.A., in solidarity and cooperation with ACT UP L.A. “These were the most intense and productive years of my life,” he says.
As the early ‘90s activist scene slowed down, Queer David took his line of Grunge Rock-inspired hats and accessories to San Francisco. The city embraced him as he did it. After all, he was born into the consciousness of free love. He started a line of clothing called Strangelove, or How I Learned Not to Live In Fear, in addition to continuing his accessories line. His works appeared in Women’s Wear Daily, California Apparel News, Seventeen, The Face (London), ID (London), Surface, Rolling Stone and more. His work can still be seen on reruns of Roseanne, The original Beverly Hills, 90210 and Melrose Place, Head of the Class, and In Living Color.
With the constant support of his sister, San Francisco’s own Lady Pat Lawrence, he took up residence at 1287 Howard St., the magical site of the former Fey Way Gallery. There he had new goals of focusing on art, creative writing, cruising hot guys, and simply supporting himself through his craft-worthiness. His skull caps were a hit with San Francisco weather. He had a retail space that was open when he felt like it. Queer David’s time as a South of Market artist ended on February 29, 2000 when a fire damaged his live/work/retail space.
In 2002 he moved to LA with his long-time love and spouse Dino Balzano. Queer David and Dino, the “Dynamic Duo” as they have been called, now reside north of Hollywood in a quiet and peaceful neighborhood; enjoying their pets Sailor and Libby. They feel lucky to live in such an embracing community. Always happy to make new friends, Queer David Lawrence can be reached at [email protected].