Michael Economy

Pansy Beat

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Pansy Beat was a short-lived fanzine published by Michael Economy in New York from 1989 to 1990, totaling five quarterly issues. Each issue’s 50-some black-and-white pages documented the exuberant downtown gay and drag club scene of that era and included one free condom. The zine offered a glimpse into an exhilarating alternative universe during the darkest years of the AIDS crisis. Interviews profiled downtown personalities on the verge of global stardom, many still working to this day. Artists such as Lady Bunny, Billy Erb, Connie Fleming, Kenny Kenny, Lady Miss Kier and Larry Tee first shared their memorable selves in print on the pages of Pansy Beat. The zine also featured interviews with Edwige Belmore, Leigh Bowery and Quentin Crisp. This book celebrates Pansy Beat’s brief but influential life, including a reprinting of all five issues in their original format, previously unseen photographs by staff photographer Michael Fazakerley, new full-color artwork by some of the original contributors, plus new essays and interviews. Book design by Jan Wandrag.

i-D Magazine, Andre-Naquian Wheeler

Flipping through the pages of the short-lived East Village quarterly zine Pansy Beat (1989-1990) offers a brilliant glimpse at the joy — and concerns — of queer artists living in the midst of the AIDS crisis.

Paper Magazine, Michael Economy

A trusted source for downtown New York culture from 1989-1990, East Village-based Pansy Beat was a quarterly fanzine focused on spotlighting queer artists in the midst of the AIDS epidemic. LGBTQ culture at the time was thriving with underground parties and nightlife characters, and the zine (published by Michael Economy and co-edited by Donald Corken) closely documented it all.

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