madison moore is a cultural critic, dj and assistant professor of queer studies at virginia commonwealth university in richmond, virginia. he is creative director and resident dj at OPULENCE, a queer techno party and art-collective with roots in london, berlin and richmond, virginia. madison writes widely about popular culture, queerness, fashion, nightlife, music, visual culture and contemporary art and was most recently a guest artist in the yale school of drama, where he offered workshops on club culture. raised in ferguson, missouri, he holds a ph.d. in american studies from yale university and has been profiled by both the new york times and the new york observer.
madison is the author of fabulous: the rise of the beautiful eccentric, published by yale university press in april 2018 — a study that positions fabulousness as a radical aesthetic practice. with topics ranging from vogue balls, Instagram, nightclubs, street fashion and prince, and weaving together autobiography and cultural analysis, madison writes with vigor, grace and humor about how marginalized people turn pain and struggle into opulence. fabulous is a rich and accessible piece of pop queer theory that’ll take you through the WERK of fabulousness.
before joining the department of gender, sexuality and women’s studies at virginia commonwealth university, from 2014-2018 madison was a european research council (ERC) postdoctoral research associate in "modern moves" in the department of english at king's college london, where he was also the director of the queer@king's research centre. at king’s, madison led the queer studies reading group, organized a conference on queer performance and curated lectures by performance artist dominic johnson and queer and trans nightlife artists kiddy smile, shaun j. wright and honey dijon. in all of this, madison works to close the gap between “theory” and “practice,” expanding who and what kinds of bodies get to be seen as “theorists.”
in 2017, with berlin-based cultural producer an.do and london-based art director jelly luise, madison launched OPULENCE, a multi-dimensional culture project that centers pleasure, queer nightlife, aesthetics, techno and experimental music, with an emphasis on DJs of color and of queer and trans experience. in just under a year, OPULENCE has gained a reputation in london for its forward-thinking music in a party space that centers queer people and femmes. and in november 2018, OPULENCE was featured in a short film released by boiler room about the value and importance queer nightlife.
as a DJ madison has a passion for bass, soundscapes and the romantic, emotive power of dark techno, with flourishes of sassy, uplifting brilliance — or, better put, a style that is severe and sickening. he has worked dance floors in london, sydney, berlin, new york and amsterdam, and aims to bring his sound to even more clubs, raves and queer dance parties in 2019.
his popular and scholarly writing has been published in a range of venues, from the paris review and crack magazine to interview, and from splice today, thought catalog and INTO to art in america, theater, the journal of popular music studies, among others. he lectures regularly on topics related to queerness, blackness, pop culture, music and queer nightlife.
madison is currently at work on three projects: a cultural study of beyonce, a performance lecture about club culture and a new book under contract at yale university press called how to go clubbing -- an exploration of the myth and mythology of saturday night.
for public lectures, interviews and dj bookings please use the contact form or send an email to email@example.com
photos by OPULENCE, unless otherwise noted.