New Film Documents History & Artistry of Flagging
Flow artists from all over the world gathered in San Francisco for the opening. As part of the world premier weekend, a series of festivities included a master's tie-dye shop at Xavier Caylor's garage, a special event, "Flagging in the Park," with DJ Susan Morabito, and flagging opportunities at most of the dance parties associated with the Up Your Alley Street Fair Weekend in San Francisco.
"'Flow Affair' elevated the reasons to come to San Francisco for the weekend," says Caylor. The addition of this premier to over 60 eager flow artists "validated the weekend experience," he adds.
As a community leader, Caylor has a key place in the San Francisco community, sharing his art. He teaches flagging classes at Gold's Gym and is a key organizer of the Flagging in the Park events and a voice to many promoters about creating flagger-friendly events.. (George Jagatik probably introduced flagging as an exercise routine at a Gold's Gym in Manhattan several years ago.)
Tribe members from New York, Los Angeles, Texas, Arizona, and even as far as Brazil came to be part of the gathering. The group ranged from those with little experience and just starting out to 20-year-veterans of flow arts. This is a diverse set of people representing all walks of life, and each with a different story to tell about the art form they love and how it was gifted to them.
Caleb Brundidge from Arizona, while participating in the tie-dye workshop, shared a story of his experience of flagging coming from Praise Worship Dancing, a more spiritually oriented, religious expression of this art form. Self-taught, Caleb came to San Francisco for the flagging weekend to meet other flaggers and learn more about creation of flags.
Also attending the weekend, Patric Nast of Texas learned a completely different version of flagging using wooden dowels rather than weighted silk. A 17-"year veteran of the flow arts, Patric learned from his "flag daddy" when the two went out clubbing.
San Franciscan Tom Lloyd was attending tie-dye session to learn how to create his own flags. He spoke of his love for the music and how he watched flaggers at parties he helped produce for many years until he decided it was time to learn the art for himself.
From the Heart
If there is one thing that can be said about flaggers, each experience resonates from the heart. A group that speaks a language of love for their art, a communal experience of care for each other, and an interest in sharing this within the gay community.
The entire flagging weekend and premier of "Flow Arts" proved to be a big success with flaggers and their admirers. Those who attended the world premier were excited to see "their" history and learn more about their own art.
"Flagging in the Park" raised over $4,000 for charity. Gathering the tribe to celebrate and share time together was perhaps the biggest reward for the hard work of the San Francisco Flagging Community.
Some great resources exist for those interested in learning about flagging, fanning or poi. Perhaps the best resource is that flow artist you see at a club, on a box, or even in the park. Ask them about what they are doing, and you will find a wealth of knowledge and passion about the flow arts.
Learn More About Flagging Here
The Temple of Poi has a website site dedicated to poi spinning and classes are offered regularly in San Francisco for those interested in learning more.
Flagger Central, a site managed by Phillip Bryan of Texas, offers forums for discussion as well as simple instructions for creating your own silk flag creations.