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There truly is no other place in the world like New York City when it comes to New York nightlife.

There aren’t many places that can finance and support an entire community of varied artists financing their lives and livelihoods working in that space – creatively, figuratively, literally and in so many other different ways.

Swiss-born Susanne Bartsch has served, for the better part of four decades, has served as this scene’s reigning queen!

Susanne Bartsch was profiled in 2014 as the final installment in the Huffington Post Queer Voices 30-part series, “After Dark: NYC Nightlife Today And Days
Past”. She took the time in the profile to talk about her rise in the club scene in the 1970s, after she opened a small SoHo boutique, along with her HIV/AIDS activist work through the Love Ball as well as her matriarchal role for young creatives and artists in a seemingly continually-revolving door.

Now, using the crowdsourcing platform Kickstarter, filmmakers are seeking to fund a full-feature doc regarding her.

Bartsch told the Huffington Post that, “it is truly one of those magical stories”. “I am not constantly spending time thinking and planning that I should have a documentary”.

It all began after the premier of a fashion film by the directing duo Anthony&Alex at Bartsch’s On Top weekly summer party back in 2015, which took place literally on The Standard Hotel’s Le Bain roof. Bartsch commented, “I really liked it. Sort of different is how it looked – like Warhol, but then not Warhol”!

It was precisely when Bartsch was ready to showcase decades worth of looks and fashion that the short film premiered. The exhibition for the fashions was at the museum FIT and was titled “Fashion Underground: The World Of Susanne Bartsch”. It was in the hopes of documenting this experience that she had invited Anthony&Alex to view the show, but the project was then shifted to a full length documentary called “@Bartschland”, all about the life and legacy of Bartsch.

Anthony&Alex told the Huffington Post, “After we began to attend her events and follow her around, we began to see an art community not getting the proper attention at all”. “So many incredible people that attend her events are artists whose medium is their own look and body. They are all expressing themselves and they get a place and a platform to be seen given to them by Suzanne. A museum curator is what she practically is, and those attending her events are artists, using as a gallery, the club. When the feeling is that society tries to squash those fitting outside the norm, Susanne enables people to be and to express themselves and just who they are”.

In the words of Susanne herself, at the end of the day, “@Bartschland is regarding the world behind the woman”.

“As much as it is a story about life, it is a New York story,” Bartsch went on. “You know that with what I do I travel around the world. And “what’s the norm is what the message is really about. The norm is that you should be just who you really want to be. You can be anything that you want to be, so do not be afraid. Just go for it and have the faith in what it is you feel”!

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