Profile: M Lamar (1972-)

M Lamar is a New York City-based composer, musician, performer, multimedia artist, and counter tenor. The New York Times describes his exhibit ‘Negrogothic’ as “a bracing alternative to the dispiriting traffic in blandly competent art clogging the New York gallery system these days, M. Lamar plumbs the depths of all-American trauma with visionary verve.” Hilton Als wrote in The New Yorker of M. Lamar: “he deconstructs the persona of the diva even as he wraps himself in divalike hauteur.”

Lamar was born in Mobile, Alabama, studied painting at the San Francisco Art Institute, and attended Yale for graduate school in sculpture before dropping out to focus on music. M. Lamar continues to train vocally with Ira Siff, founder and lead soprano of La Gran Scena Opera Company, who was also Klaus Nomi’s trainer.

He is the twin brother of actress Laverne Cox;  in two episodes of the Netflix show Orange Is the New Black, Lamar played his sister’s character prior to her transition. Lamar participated in an open dialogue with authors bell hooks, Marci Blackman, and Samuel R. Delany called Transgressive Sexual Practice as part of hooks’ scholar-in-residence at the New School in October 2014

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