Art Beat: Dia Dear on Performing Queerness and Sincere Vulnerability

When Dia Dear takes the stage, things are about to become brutally uncomfortable and strangely beautiful. Her shaved head is typically plastered in white makeup and perhaps some sparse lipstick or some dark rings penciled around her eyes. Although she's often found performing at drag shows, it would be a stretch to define her performances as traditional drag — some elements of her work, such as her lip-synching and her occasional high-heel wearing, are similar, but beyond those characteristics, she assumes her own style. Instead of dancing along to a Mariah Carey tune, you're much more likely to see her enacting something quieter by Radiohead or Antony and the Johnsons. Don't expect her to bust out a cancan, either. Her movements are slow, with Kabuki-like precision.

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