The month of June is a time to celebrate the LGBTQ community and reflect on the advances of queer people to strengthen civil liberties around the world, even in a moment of great political uncertainty. It’s also a good opportunity to spotlight the richness and diversity of culture we have within the community. Hyperallergic is commemorating Pride Month by featuring one contemporary queer artist per day on the website and letting them speak for themselves. Click here to participate.

Zac Thompson sitting inside his installation, “It felt like you were a guest in my house and I was too nice to ask you to leave” (2019), pastel and charcoal on site-specific wall with TV showing continuous loop of performance video duration 2 minute and 50 seconds, approximately 100 x 141 x 96 inches (courtesy the artist)

Zac Thompson

Age: 27

Location: Brooklyn, New York

Artistic Medium: Drawing, installation, performance, and books

Who are you and what do you do?

The Christian missionary family I was born into didn’t make room for queer artists, let alone pagan genderfuck drag queens. Since I’m both of those things, the myopic traditionalist world my parents made for me growing up felt too small. To make room, I’ve had to build my own worlds and environments — using my work to explore the ephemerality of these normative structures around home, family, and gender that I grew up with, through a combination of drawing and performance. My work is a conversation between my less than perfect past and my newfound present reality based on fluidity and queerness. By acknowledging my history and taking from it the things that serve me best, I hope to create a more loving future for myself.

What are the top three greatest influences on your work?

Käthe Kollwitz, The Simpsons, and Jeanette Winterson

Describe your coffee order.

The largest ice coffee possible.

What is your greatest accomplishment?

Being able to contribute something, however small, to the Brooklyn queer community.

What constitutes a perfect day?

Day drinking on a roof with a lover.

What was your favorite exhibition from last year?

Thomas Lanigan-Schmidt’s show at Howl! Happening.

What would your superpower be if you had one?

The power to impeach.

Tell us a lie about yourself.

I love Jeff Koons.

What is one question you wish somebody would ask about your work?

Can I buy it?

What is the greatest threat to humanity?


What did you make when you first started making art?

Really bad Erwin Wurm knockoffs.

Do you prefer spilling the tea or throwing shade?

Spilling the tea cause I’m always thirsty.

What is your all-time favorite work of art?

PISSED by Cassils

What are your plans for pride month?


What is the future of queerness?

“Some will say that all we have are the pleasures of this moment, but we must never settle for that minimal transport; we must dream and enact new and better pleasures, other ways of being in the world, and ultimately new worlds.” — Cruising Utopia: The Then and There of Queer Futurity by José Esteban Muñoz

Name one guilty pleasure.

Big Buck Hunter.

Greatest queer icon of the internet: Babadook, Momo, or a pervading sense of existential angst?

A pervading sense of existential angst.

Is there enough support for queer artists where you live?

Queer artists can never have enough support … even in New York City.

How do you stay cool during the summer?

Going to the movies by myself in the middle of the afternoon.

What is your favorite type of milk?

Half & half.

“Queer Artists in Their Own Words” is an ongoing feature happening every day in the month of June. For prior posts in the series, please click here.

Zachary Small was a writer at Hyperallergic.