Making Art from the Heart

Hope. Bauhaus Rendering of the rainbow flag, including the color black.

Making Art from the Heart: A glimpse into the work of award-winning flimmaker and LGBT activist Wolfgang Busch

Making Art from the Heart: From Germany to America, from How Do I Look to A Flow Affair, receiving the MLK Humanitarian Award, and beyond, Award-Winning, Artist-Activist and Filmmaker, Wolfgang Busch, continues to make art from the heart

Wolf Busch, MLK Award
Wolfgang Busch holding his just received Keep the Dream Alive Humanitarian Award, 2015. Photo by Alina Oswald

Some people have you at “Hello,” others at “How Do I Look.” For me, it was How Do I Look. Let me explain….
Back in 2006, Wolfgang Busch’s film documenting the ballroom scene not only introduced me to and got me interested in the ballroom community itself, but also introduced me to the life and art of an amazing artist and activist, and made me a fan of Busch’s work, in general. I smile every time I get asked how I met the award-winning activist and filmmaker. My answer always is: How Do I Look, and almost always received with “Hmms” and “Ahhs,” widened eyes and nodding heads, especially once it’s reconfirm by Wolf Busch, himself.

Wolfgang Busch: speech after receiving the MLK Award. Photo by Alina Oswald.
Wolfgang Busch: speech after receiving the MLK Award. Photo by Alina Oswald.

A German native, Busch moved to the States in 1981, with dreams to pursue a career in the entertainment industry. His contributions extend far beyond the entertainment industry, though. His activism work reaches the LGBT community, the AIDS community, and beyond. Throughout his work, creating art from the heart, he touches hearts in the most unusual and unique ways, always informing, educating, entertaining, and also enlightening, telling the most unusual stories in the most unique ways, opening not only hearts, but also eyes and minds.
Several years after the debut of How Do I Look, I got to attend the opening night of A Flow Affair, a documentary highlighting and keeping alive the art of floguing (Voguing and flagging). At the event, which took place in New York City’s West Village, I got to meet one of the artist’s mentors, Reverend Charles Gilmore. [he documented the art of floguing, in an effort to keep it alive for generations to come]
Other mentors include Darryl Hell and Kevin Omni, both whom I met last year, while covering the First International Ballroom Convention, an event produced by Busch. The artist is also a member of the House of Omni.
Busch also runs a gay table tennis group, Pink Pong, every Monday, Thursday, and Friday. “Any level player can join us,” he says.
Presently, Busch is working on a new documentary, My 90’s, covering the New York City rock scene during the 1990s.

Wolf Busch & friends. b&w
Ralph & Barb Carboy, Vic Hennegan, and Wolfgang Busch. Courtesy of Wolf Busch
Wolfgang Busch. Courtesy of Wolf Busch
Wolfgang Busch. Courtesy of Wolf Busch
Wolf Busch and Rodel Hernandez, Editorial for Compete Magazine
Wolfgang Busch and Rodel Hernandez, at the Pink Pong Foundation. Photographed by Alina Oswald.

Most recently, on January 31 of this year, Busch received the Keep the Dream Alive Humanitarian Award for his contributions to the Black community, here, in the States, and also in Germany. The event took place at Terrance on the Park, in Queens, New York, on January 31.
I got the chance to photograph Busch that night, surrounded by friends, fans and followers, receiving his award. And as I watched the ceremony unfold in front of my eyes, I could only wonder what’s next for the artist-activist. One can only wonder. I am sure it will be intriguing, interesting, entertaining, and enlightening.

To learn more about Wolfgang Busch and keep up with his upcoming events, visit him online at Art From the Heart.

To find out more about My 90’s, please visit http://my90snyc.blogspot.com

To find out more about the Pink Pong Foundation, check out www.PinkPongFoundation.org

To learn more about last year’s International Ballroom Convention, check out the article Invitation to a Ball, published in A&U Magazine–America’s AIDS Magazine.

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