THE ROOFTOP: You've defined yourself as a "dance installation and performance artist." Who is Saturn Rising? A futuristic pop icon in progress, or a transversal artist?
SATURN RISING: The bio you're referring to needs to be updated. [Laughs.] I have moved on from exclusively dance/performance based shows. I am both of the latter descriptions you mentioned. Currently I exist as a transversal artist rising to futuristic pop icon.
"I definitely think the world needs me, whether they're ready or not." –Saturn Rising
You made yourself a name in SF’s hip hop queer scene. What would you say is the greatest gift that scene gave you?
I've made my best friends here. I've made my best mistakes. I met the love of my life...I pursued myself in San Francisco. Only because the Bay embraces people, it loves people. The community...the folks that I know are all beautiful, incredible, and great. I'm very blessed to have been grown and nurtured here.
Looking at your work, it reminds me of a chat we had with Tunde Olaniran about transgression. Do you sometimes feel yourself as a "transgressor"?
I think what's transgressive is that I'm pursuing love and I'm pursuing light...in spite of this fear mongering. Some folks want us to be afraid of our existence and what that means; they want us to live in fear of it. And after all this freedom, I ain't going back. I'm keeping the light. That's transgressive.
Saturn Rising's "FUKWITME"
(produced by davOmakesbeats)
You once said, "I hope my music and performance shows the fight in-between the success and the struggle.” What is the work you’ve done that is the best illustration of this fight?
That duality is best illustrated on my new EP Darkest Dream. My darkest dream is to be loved, because all the things that I am couldn't be loved. Or so I was told. Or so I held on to...sometimes I still hold. But I am walking through the gate illuminating all of the previously unloved things about me. When I perform in character, I feel love. I'm afraid to show myself because it may not be real love; I'm searching. But I know that right now, I am everything that I wanted to be and that's my darkest dream.
How ready is the world for Saturn Rising?
Man you know, this psychic said that I'm an apocalyptic artist. The apocalypse that I would want to bring forth or at least a bridge to it. I definitely think the world needs me, whether they're ready or not.
On Thursday, August 10th, The Rooftop presents Saturn Rising
The Darkest Dream EP Release Party
The Standard, Downtown LA | 9pm