Power & Light Northbound Stop

KC Streetcar Shelter

Project Description

“welcome_to_soakie’s” is created with materials from Kansas City’s inaugural Black queer archive, {B/qKC}. Launched in March 2024, {B/qKC} vol. 02 tells the story of Soakie’s: a sandwich shop in Downtown Kansas City that, through an unlikely partnership between the Italian mob and two Black gay men, would become a booming Black gay nightclub from 1993 – 2004.

In a dazzling display of Kansas City’s rich ballroom culture, Black queer camaraderie, and chosen family, Gary Carrington, Tisha Taylor and Starla Carr collections of {B/qKC} –– each named after a legendary Black queer elder and their licensed materials –– tell their own stories of this once safe space.

{B/qKC} is founded by Nasir Anthony Montalvo and produced through The Kansas City Defender, a local Black community media organization.


Zach Frazier

Zach is an experimental self-publishing shop that curates and disperses narratives and histories excluded by traditional publishing. Working collaboratively across mediums and disciplines, Their work challenges traditional modes of collaboration, creation, and exhibition. Acting against historical models of client/contractor, Frazier’s process enables a collaborative flow where artists, writers, historians, and more act as co-authors.

Nasir Montalvo

Nasir Anthony Montalvo is an award-winning transdisciplinary artist; and founder of Kansas City’s abolitionist, Black-queer community archive, {B/qKC}. Originally from Kissimmee, Florida, Montalvo now resides in Missouri as a part-time Managing Editor for The Kansas City Defender. They can be found at @1800nasi.

Website | astrpress.com and kansascitydefender.com/bqkc 

Instagram | @astrpress and @1800nasi