Jesse Morgan, a queer activist and organizer with MondoHomo, said he and other organizers were also looking at the event’s future.
“Mondohomo is taking a huge different direction this year, and we’re taking a look at what Atlanta needs and what the queer community needs,” said Morgan. “Do we need to change things up? That’s what our main focus is right now.”
A full statement from organizers is expected later this week.
The last update to Mondo Homo’s official website came almost a year ago, on May 25, 2012. The event’s Facebook and Twitter pages have also been relatively quiet in 2013. Organizers began discussing not having the festival this year a few months ago.
Normally held over Memorial Day Weekend, Mondohomo has been a staple of Atlanta’s queer calendar since 2006. The event was known as an alterna-queer gathering that catered to artists, musicians and social activists.
UPDATE on Aug. 27: The MondoPosse issued a press release today explaining more about why there will be no more MondoHomo fests. Here it is in its entirety:
For six amazing years, MondoHomo has been a vibrant and powerful force in all of our lives. We are sad to announce that MondoHomo is in the process of disbanding, and there are no plans for a MondoHomo festival in the future.
Each Memorial Day weekend from 2007-2012, the group of organizers known as the MondoPosse put on a vibrant and exciting multi-day festival unlike any other event in the city. The festival brought in queer musicians, artists, and performers from all over the country, sponsoring nights of visual and performance art, spoken word, rock, hip-hop, drag, burlesque, theater, and film, as well as days of workshops and brunch and afternoons of grilling and music in the park.
MondoHomo eschewed corporate sponsors, raising all funds from local businesses, personal donations, and fundraisers such as WigOut and the Queerstory Spaghetti Bingo Dinner. Festival events were always “pay what you can” to make it more affordable, with a “no-smoking inside” policy and increased accessibility to create a space that everyone could enjoy, whether we were at Eyedrum, The Atlanta Arts Exchange, or bouncing around various bars in Atlanta.
We as an organizing group have put in countless hours over the years, as well as passion, sweat and tears, to make it the wonderful and life-changing event that it has been. We, and our communities, have loved MondoHomo, have given our best and our all, have believed in it, and have brought others to believe in it. It has played an irreplaceable part in the lives of all of us, and of countless other queers, artists, and supporters.
But as the years have passed, it has become more and more difficult for some organizers to summon the enthusiasm, effort, time and will to keep it alive. While some organizers plan to continue similar celebrations of queer art, others must move on for both personal and practical reasons. The founding organizers have come to the conclusion that now is the time for MondoHomo to find closure, and make way for other fantastic endeavors.
We know that this announcement comes with great disappointment to some, and we ask for understanding from our communities. We find comfort in all that we’ve gained from MondoHomo, and in knowing that some will continue its spirit.
MondoHomo is confident in the future of queer arts, and is committed to allocating leftover funds to worthy causes, including a new festival being planned by some former Posse organizers. This new festival deserves not only new blood and new ideas, but also a new name, to establish its independence and unique way of doing things. An initial grant of $2000 will be given as seed money for a new festival, with remaining leftover monies from MondoHomo to be dispersed to worthy organizations.
MondoHomo has shown the power of believing in the gorgeous and incomparable value of our queer cultures, arts and communities. It provided a much-needed space for radical queers in Atlanta and nation-wide, and we are forever grateful for your attendance, dancing, and contributions. We look forward to your continued support of the next fabulous arts and queer revolution in Atlanta, the Southeast, and beyond!
Top photos: A rowdy, unique queer crowd was the backbone of the MondoHomo festival. (by Dyana Bagby)