Howl Happening to Present Flloyd: Dicks and Divas — Opening September 9

Visual Arts

September 9 – October 22nd, 2023
Exhibition and Events
Opening Reception: Saturday, September 9th, 6 – 8 PM

Howl! Happening
6 East 1st Street, New York, NY 10013 6

New York, NY — August 24, 2023: Howl! Happening is pleased to present DICKS and DIVAS, an exhibition and event series presenting the first ever show of East Village performance artist, filmmaker, electronic music producer, and painter FLLOYD. Spanning his career from his youth in Atlanta to his Pyramid Club involvement in the 1980s to the present, DICKS and DIVAS veers between the iconographic, pornographic, and other sensual worlds to unite Floyd’s unapologetic, persistent, and honest fundamental passions. The exhibition will be on view through October 22, 2023, and is highlighted by a series of events with special guests, a screenprinting workshop, and screenings of Flloyd’s video and film work.

Dicks and Divas is centered on six large-scale works, all presenting figures ranging from the obscure to cult legends in film, pop culture, and the drag scene from various eras, alongside more than fifty smaller works. In the alcove at Howl! Happening, the paintings are accompanied by a trove of erotic polaroids taken by Floyd spanning the decades of his career.

While at first glance, Flloyd’s paintings appear to be prints, every single dot comprising the paintings is drawn by hand.  As such, waves of dots on paper and canvas are assembled into objects of fascination, beauty, and power, before dispersing once again into mystery. The shapes Flloyd utilizes as the baseline of his practice function as the codex to create the image. Each work can be enjoyed on the level of the image (the icon that the painting represents) and on the level of the painting (the abstraction in which the shapes are formed). Flloyd describes his paintings as existing within “a language of simplicity through which a shape accumulates into something else”

Even within the iconography of the figures Flloyd paints, layers of representation and symbolism are created, as Dicks and Divas places paintings of classic “divas” such as Diana Ross alongside representations of lesser-known figures including actress Barbara O. Jones,  best known for her work in the films of the L.A. Rebellion movement of 1970s black filmmakers. Other figures portrayed include Lady Bunny, Sissy, and contemporary pop culture figures including singer Grimes.

Known for his unique ability to portray horror, beauty, and humor in a single moment, Flloyd is an inimitable presence and a longstanding member of NYC’s Lower East Side and East Village art scenes. Among the likes of RuPaul and Lady Bunny, Flloyd was an early establishing force from the influential Atlanta drag scene that planted its roots on the Pyramid stage. He has presented his groundbreaking performances at several iterations of Wigstock and is prominently featured in the feature-length Berry Shills 1995 production. He has acted and done performance art off-Broadway at La Mama, the Kitchen, P.S. 122, Here, and the Guggenheim.

Between 1992 and 1995, Flloyd was a member of the Blacklips Performance Cult, presenting original plays such as Death, Tooth: A Disco ButohTrouble with Blacklips, and adapted for the stage Nashville and Jem and the Holograms. He has also directed many short films and released in 2002 his first feature film which is an adaptation of a Blacklips’ play Jack the Ripper. 

At Howl! Happening, DICKS and DIVAS will be accompanied by special events including The Channel 69 Trilogy hosted by Flloyd and Linda Simpson, and a Premiere of Flloyd’s solo Performance, Flock of Slits. A complete list of accompanying programming can be found below:


Saturday, September 23 / 6–8 PM

Flloyd’s Channel 69 Trilogy: Hosted by Linda Simpson and Flloyd

In the early 1990s, Linda Simpson hosted Channel 69, a variety entertainment program that brought the East Village drag scene to public television. The series featured new and upcoming queens of the era, including Flloyd’s special dedicated episodes, where he presented his groundbreaking “Drag Trilogy.” At Howl! Happening, A special screening of Flloyd’s breakthrough drag performances of the 1990s will be followed by live commentary with Flloyd and Linda Simpson.


While many of the performances featured on Channel 69 constituted of regular drag performance, Flloyd’s “Drag Trilogy” marked a conceptual turn for the show, and for Flloyd as an artist. Prior to 1990, Flloyd performed as Felicia with his band The People Tree. Taking inspiration from RuPaul, Ethyl Eichelberger, and Lypsinka, Felicia soon transformed into a more daring performer who went on to make a great impact in the East Village scene. 


Flloyd would go on to develop the “Drag Trilogy” for Channel 69 the same year. The cycle is broken down into three 30-minute specials: “This You Won’t Believe,” “Sex Clown,” and “Facility Girl (A Tribute to National Secretary’s Day).” Each of the numbers bleeds into each other conceptually, innovating and expanding on performative elements first explored by artists like Lypsinka, such as the inclusion of dialogue. Flloyd’s “Drag Trilogy” marks an outstanding breakthrough in drag history and for Flloyd as an artist.


The evening will open with Flloyd’s Wigstock Performance, following a screening of the complete “Drag Trilogy,” followed by a Q+A discussion with Flloyd and Linda Simpson to discuss the importance of these performances and their legacies within the community.

Saturday, September 30th / 3–5 PM / 
Dicks and Divas Silk Screening event with Flloyd
At this interactive live event, Flloyd will provide silk screens, inks, and designs for attendees to silk-screen personal items in various sizes and designs. Attendees will be able to choose 4 design options, two dicks, and two divas.

Saturday, October 7th   / 6–8 PM
Directed by Flloyd: An Evening of Video and Film Work

In addition to his visual arts and performance art career, Flloyd is also well-known for his significant body of work behind the camera. At Directed by Flloyd: An Evening of Video and Film Works, attendees will get a full view of Flloyd’s breadth and depth as a filmmaker.

The evening will begin with a summary of Flloyd’s short films and music videos, including a short film titled “Field Day” (4 min, 50 sec), music videos made for his band 3Puen, music videos made with his band Flock of Slits, the opening credits of Channel 69, and selections from Flloyd’s own public access TV show Gay Action News.

Following a short intermission, the event will culminate in a screening of Flloyd’s feature-length film, Jack the Ripper. Directed between 1992 and 2002, Flloyd directed and produced a film adaptation of Blacklips Performance Cult’s greatest plays, Love Forever’s “Jack the Ripper.” Starring the cast of Blacklips, this all-black-and-white feature follows the story of local sex workers living under the black cloud of a serial killer of women lurking the streets at night. One by one, they are murdered in high stylized fashion by Jack (played by Flloyd).

Never released and rarely screened, Jack the Ripper remains a high mark in Flloyd’s prowess as a director and the entire cast of Blacklips, who provide their singular talents in this historic drag film.

Saturday, October 14th / 6 PM
Flloyd Presents: Flock of Slits: A Premiere Performance

Flloyd presents the premiere performance of his solo act: Flock of Slits. A multimedia choreographed event with props, lighting, and dancers, which Flloyd promises to be a “dramatic over the top multimedia invasion of the soul!”

Flock of Slits is Flloyd’s long-running solo effort which has over seventeen albums, including masterpieces such as The Witches of Bullshit, Curry of the Mind, and more. Collaging intuitive samples, Flock of Slits creates epic sound stories sculpted from the echoes in space. Although Flock of Slits has been a long-running project for Flloyd, the work has never been presented live.

Provocative, entertaining, and enjoyable, Flloyd will present this work alongside the Cherry Dazzle and the Dazzle Dancers.


Howl! Happening
Howl Arts Inc. is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving the past and celebrating the contemporary culture of the East Village and Lower East Side. Howl Arts curates exhibitions and produces events that invite active participation of the community to circulate ideas, generate discussion, and celebrate the fearless innovators who continue to influence new generations. Howl Arts encompasses dynamic cultural spaces and community-centered programming that include Howl! Arts / Howl! Archive (HAHA), Howl! Happening: An Arturo Vega Project, The Howl! Arts Collection and Archive, The Vega Arts Workshop series, Howl! High Teen Arts program and Howl! HELP.

Howl! Happening
6 East 1st Street
New York City, NY 10003

Media Contact
For additional information, interview requests, and images of artwork, please contact:

Chloe Pingeon
Blue Medium, Inc.
Tel: +1-212-675-1800