The artist Cosy Pièro (1937) ran the bar Bei Cosy in Munich from 1692 to 1982 which attracted an unprecedentedly tolerant mix of artists, straight, gay, lesbian, transgender and queer people.
“Bei Cosy’ established itself as an island of happiness for all kinds of creatures of the night. [… ] Following ‘Bei Cosy’ in the Baaderstrasse, I opened the second in the Klenzestrasse. It was here that we had a transvestite show performed for the first time by Andrè from Berlin’s acclaimed Chez-Nouz. The bar was literally bursting at the seams. I also went on stage here, just as I had before. I discovered my love for chansons, writing my own lyrics and songs, which a good friend accompanied and composed for. From then on I performed at many a Cosy-evening.”Cosy Pièro’s exhibition text for “Bei Cosy” at Rongwrong, Amsterdam in 2017
After the bar moved to the Elisabethplatz, she sold it to her partner and co-worker in 1980 and concentrated again on her artistic practise. “I had a lot to catch up on, but when in 1985, the Dany Keller gallery in Munich took interest in my work and subsequently represented me internationally, I had fulfilled my dream.” (Cosy Pièro, 2017)
Upon the invitation of the art space Lothringer13_Florida, the artist Richard John Jones researched the disappearance of queer spaces in Munich in 2015. On the second and last evening of his temporary bar, he hosted together with the former committee of Florida (Maximiliane Baumgartner, Colin Djukic, Philipp Gufler, Fabian Hesse and Ruth Höflich) a concert by Cosy Pièro. In the summer of 2017, Philipp Gufler, Richard John Jones and Laurie Cluitmans re-launched Bei Cosy “somewhere between an exhibition, a bar and a costume party” at the art space Rongwrong in Amsterdam as a homage to her legendary bar.
Many thanks to Cosy Pièro, Colin Djukic, who is responsible for the sound recording and mixing, Richard John Jones and the Lothringer13_Florida committee for allowing us to put the live recordings of the 2015 concert online for the first time. A research group at the Forum is reconstructing since 2019 the diverse history of womxn bars in Munich.
Text: Philipp Gufler