1. Callie Lugosi
2. Jess Mann
3. Jen Doerksen
Favourite Local Writer
1. Frances Koncan
2. Callie Lugosi
3. Jen Zoratti
Callie Lugosi’s name may be familiar in the pages of The Uniter, behind cover features like “An (incomplete) queer history” and “(Re)presenting fashion.”
Lugosi has been capturing stories in words and photos for The Uniter since 2016 and has extensively documented local scenes, from music to Winnipeg’s drag community. This year, they received recognition for excellence in both creative avenues as Winnipeg’s favourite local photographer and writer.
Throughout their creative career, Lugosi has worn multiple hats, not only as a writer and photographer, but also as an online content creator, queer historian and sometimes-editor.
Their latest project, Majesties, is a photo-documentation of Winnipeg’s drag community through a series of portraits that read like Renaissance paintings.
“I couldn’t think of a better group of people to collaborate with, because they bring so much to the table,” Lugosi says. “They’re an artist’s dream.”
Though parts of Lugosi’s work documenting local queer history came from extensive amounts of digging into the University of Manitoba’s Gay and Lesbian Archives and the University of Winnipeg’s Two-Spirit Archives, the community itself has been their most valuable resource.
“I’ll reach out and say, ‘Hey, I need to know something about this really old drag queen from the ’80s,’ and someone will be like, ‘Oh, that person knows them or knew them before they died,’” Lugosi says. “Since the community is so small, it’s usually pretty likely I’ll find something.”
Lugosi’s creative process works in a way that gives those they photograph the agency to be their own creative directors and document themselves the way they wish to be recorded.
On Majesties, “I asked about everything from what colour fabric would you like to sit in front of, what do you want to wear, how can I build something around you to complement you?” Lugosi says. “How do you want to be immortalized?”
Published in Volume 74, Number 12 of The Uniter (November 28, 2019)