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“Renaissance and Apocalypse: Notes on the Bay Area's Transsexual Arts Scene” sets the scene for the emergence of distinctively trans artists and art practices within a wider queer culture. Renaissance implies rebirth, and the text hints at pasts in which something like what we now call transgender people may have had their (our) own forms of cultural continuity and place in the culture at large. The nineties was not the first, nor will it be the last, “tipping point” for trans people—the point at which trans people might begin again to make their own art after their own desires, and the point at which that work might start attracting the attention of a wider audience. The author warns of the dangers of sanding off the edges of trans experiences for the sake of their wider cultural consumption.

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