In the summer of 2021, women and queer artists came together to form the Rainbow Rodeo collective — a group for those concerned with the lack of queer and women representation in the Eugene art and house show scene. Rainbow Rodeo began as a collaborative effort between house show organizers and the collective’s founders, who at the time had planned to create a pop-up shop for queer and women artists to sell their art and clothing to fellow community members.
Speaking with co-founder, Dani, there was an overwhelming response from the community who sought the creation of a space created specifically for women and the queer community. Dani described the importance
of that night as a special opportunity for local queer and women artists to share their creations within the community, giving a familiar face and name to those with whom they could exchange their creations, directly visualizing the support of their local community.
The group received an immense amount of support from social media as students and community members flocked to this new platform for women and queer voices. The disregard for women and queer safety voiced by the founders of the RR clearly resonated with the community as DM’s flooded their social media pages asking when the next event would occur. The formation of the group followed shortly after continued interest in supporting queer and female artists in the community was expressed. For Madeleine, another member of RR, the experience of organizing the pop-up empowered them to realize the ease by which they could organize
community projects and make a real difference. Establishing fundraisers, open mics, drag shows and music festivals that promote the work, participation, and uplifting of these artists are among the future objectives of Rainbow Rodeo.
An additional goal for Rainbow Rodeo is the creation of safe spaces in the house show scene. Co-founder of RR, Dani, stated bluntly that members of their community do “not feel safe” in these environments and, furthermore, are not provided a platform to display their art in a space that feels supportive and welcoming — most of these scenes are composed of male, white artists. Providing security at these events and hosting their own house shows is RR’s direct approach at tackling these issues and changing the culture to a more inclusive and safe environment.
If you would like to know more about Rainbow Rodeo, follow them on Instagram: @rainbowrodeoeugene or follow their Slack at rainbow-rodeo.slack.com