Who was Michael Alig? Remember this club kid’s life in pictures
During the late 1980s and early 1990s, the New York nightclub scene was struck by a group of subversive individuals known as the Club Kids. Most of them were members of the LGBT community trying to find an outlet to express themselves.
The Club Kids’ lives were filled with drama and lots of drugs. One of its members, Michael Alig, became addicted to heroin which eventually led him to murder Andre “Angel” Meléndez.
Michael Alig admitted killing Melendez by hitting him in the head with a hammer. Alig claims he doesn’t remember the details because he was heavily drugged. Michael Alig never hid the murder. However, none of the other Club Kids took him seriously as he was always under the influence of drugs and, because of the nature of the subculture, outrageous statements like Alig’s weren’t uncommon.
Despite the murder, Alig was still recognized as one of the main faces in the drag community until his recent death on Christmas. We gathered some pictures to summarize Alig’s life.
Even from a young age, Michael Alig always had an over the top style.
Bold eyes, and bold lips
The Club Kids were easily recognizable by their dramatic use of makeup. Here’s a headshot of one of Michael Alig’s looks.
Nightlife was a huge part of the Club Kids’ identity. Here we have Michael Alig having a drink at the club.
Makeup was also a key element in the Club Kids’ aesthetic. Here we see Michael Alig taking an editorial approach to scars.
What a mood
As the Club Kids started gaining notoriety, they began appearing in magazines, movies, and TV. Michael Alig’s identifier definitely resonates with people to this day.
Drama’s the name of the game
The Club Kids were constantly trying to go against what was conventional. Michael Alig was also pushing the envelope constantly with his bold appearance.
One of the reasons the Club Kids challenged the aesthetic of their era was because they used it as a way to send a message. The subculture originated as a reaction to the AIDS crisis which had caused panic among nightclubbers.
Against gender roles
For the Club Kids, gender-bending wasn’t a foreign concept. Michael Alig wasn’t the exception.
After serving time for the murder of Angel Meléndez, Michael Alig returned to the spotlight. To his death, many were willing to overlook Alig’s crime because of his influence on the LGBT scene.