Del LaGrace Volcano
American Hermaphrodyké > Transman
Photographer & Film-maker
"There are no victims in Sublime Mutations only heroes and stars. Ordinary folk
living extraordinary lives, without the safety net most people take for granted. Each
face and each body are a part of Sublime Mutations because they have impressed and
inspired me by being exactly who they are. There are many routes to the same location
and no hierarchies of transgression. We must all create our own personal strategies for
surviving in a world that wonít acknowledge much less validate, our existence. I believe
in crossing the line, not just once, but as many times as it takes to weave a web we can
all walk on" (Del LaGrace Volcano)
astrology chart, profile, links
Leo Ascendant, Leo Sun, Cancer Moon, Uranus Rising
ASTRODATA (Sy Scholfield [copyright] quotes date, year, place and time of birth for chart from Del LaGrace via email in 2003). RR: A.
FEATURES: PERSONALIZED PLANETS:
Leo SUN (conjunct Ascednant), Leo URANUS (conjunct Ascendant & Sun), Virgo JUPITER (sextile both luminaries), Libra NEPTUNE (conjunct IC, square both luminaries), Aquarius CHIRON (conjunct Descendant).
CHINESE SIGN: FIRE ROOSTER/COCK. NUMEROLOGY: "10/1" Life Path.
Del (bottom left) and Sy (top right), Brunswick Street, Fortitude Valley © Del LaGrace Volcano, 2003
With an undefined shape and no patterns among the planets in his chart, Del LaGrace
Volcano is someone who definitely has his own ideas on life. As Del writes in his
"As a gender variant visual artist I access 'technologies of gender' in order to amplify rather than erase the hermaphroditic traces of my body. I name myself. A gender abolitionist. A part time gender terrorist. An intentional mutation and intersex by design, (as opposed to diagnosis), in order to distinguish my journey from the thousands of intersex individuals who have had their 'ambiguous' bodies mutilated and disfigured in a misguided attempt at 'normalization'. I believe in crossing the line as many times as it takes to build a bridge we can all walk across."
He's previously explained that:
"A Gender Terrorist is anyone who consistently and intentionally subverts, destablizes
and challenges the binary gender system. This is the notion that only two genders exist, male and female. The fact is, while this system might work (and that's a matter of opinion) for most people it doesn't work. Too many people are harmed both physically and mentally, in the attempt to force themselves into a shoe that doesn't fit."
Gender issues can be/come paramount for people who have each luminary in its own sign
(Moon in Cancer & Sun in Leo). While Del has such a combination, both these objects
are also conjoined and found in the dreamy 12th house, thus leading to a fascination
with the fusion of gender/s and a focus on transcending the usual binary "sex/gender" model. Del's Neptune is the most angular planet that aspects the conjunction between his luminaries, forming a square with both the Moon & Sun. We hear echoes of Neptune (ruler of the 'mutable water' sign, Pisces) in his statement:
"Iíve possessed and been possessed by a multitude of names, bodies and identities in my forty odd years. Change, mutation and migration are as natural to me as staying the same might be to you." This part of Del's nature stems from the location of Neptune on his IC (base of the chart). Instability and per/mutations are thus the very Neptunian grounds upon which Del's philosophy of life is built, and from which it irradiates.
In Del Volcano's chart, travel-loving Neptune (the planet most associated with
photography and film) is found in the last degree of Libra (partnerships and balance) in
the Third House (books & communications), while Jupiter (promotion) also aspects both
Volcano, (formerly known as lesbian photographer Della Grace) thus studied
filmmaking in 1977-79 before moving to San Francisco and majoring in photography at the
San Francisco Art Institute. With a 1992 Masters in Photographic Studies from the
University of Derby, he has exhibited his photographs as well as his videos throughout
Europe, the States, Canada and Brazil. His three photographic monographs are LoveBites
1991, The Drag King Book 1999, and Sublime Mutations 2000, while his
filmmaking credits include, Pansexual Public Porn 1997, A Prodigal Son?
1998, and Journey Intersex, 1999. While Angular Neptune makes for a sense of
mystery (and escapes into or from it), an exact sextile to this planet from Pluto in
the First House brings intimate subjects like the transman and transmasculinity into the
Throughout his productions, Volcano has pioneered in the area of gender-b(l)ending,
especially through the the valorisation of imagery of masculine femininity.
Masculinity and (its) performance (through art) become big issues for many people with
strong Leo accents in their charts. Volcano has an outstanding stellium of five planets
plus the Ascendant in Leo, with the Sun (as ruler of Leo and these planets) also conjunct
the Ascendant in its own sign of the Lion. Thus regarding The Drag King Book
"Each image was an event created for the camera based on the
performance of a persona in real life."
The trine from the Sun to earthy & physical
Saturn means that Volcano reveals (trans)gendered identies as performative, the Twelfth
House placement of the Leo Sun reinforcing the view that gender (and masculinity in
particular) is a changeable and transferrable rather than fixed construction.
Neptune in the Third House also lends itself to his belief that "language is mine to
"I am aware that most of you prefer stability, especially when it comes to gender.
The binary imperative demands we make a definitive choice. One sex. One body. Male or
Female. Homo or Hetero. Yin and Yang. It's a given. Or rather... it's what we've been
given. Gender is the last bastion of civilization as we know it. One of the few Titanics
left to us at millenium's edge. I'm an iceberg. A bomb in the Boy's Club. Tick Tock.
Del's chosen surname "Volcano" and self-described status as a "gender terrorist" and
"bomb in the Boy's Club" reflect the combination of several planetary influences.
These include disruptive Uranus rising very close on the Ascendant, explosive Pluto in
the last degree of fixed-fire Leo, Pluto conjunct pushy Mars (also in Leo), and Mars
ruling (and in trine with) the feisty last degree of Aries on the MC. A
highly-inflammable combination by any means!
more queer stars
photo © Del LaGrace Volcano
used with permission
Del's books include
Del acts in
Del has contributed works to these publications...