Today we’d like to introduce you to Lauren Amador.
Lauren, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
How does an architect find themselves opening a lesbian bar in Los Angeles?
When it comes to architecture, I follow those I find the most intimidating and eccentric. Who has an alien perspective and works fiercely to challenge the norms? I want to be around them. Those same mentors show me that good design can radically change our perspectives. Which brought me to the Fingerjoint. Los Angeles needs a Lesbian bar and I am going to build something ahead of the curve for our community. It’s an intimidating venture where my obsessive personality builds out the macro seven-year vision and also lets me fetishize details as small as the perfect under-counter bag hooks. Both fields—architecture and bar building—keep me hyper-engaged. There is always more to learn and more people with alien ideas to connect with. This is how I got to where I am today – truly just being excited about what I’m doing.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I won’t minimize it—starting two businesses is hard. Sometimes I think I’m doing too much but those are the voices of the doubters that have snuck in. Most of the time, I’m just going and doing and when I look back, everything gets done. I’ve been told since I was a baby dyke that if I’m good at everything that I’ll never be great at any one thing. Proving those people wrong, that I can do whatever combination of things to make one perfect custom thing for myself is sometimes a struggle, but it’s also how you get to new ideas. Opening a lesbian cocktail bar and practicing architecture are one and the same for me. The name the “Fingerjoint” came from thinking about the intersection of architecture (wood joinery) and lesbianism (what you think it is) whilst drinking at a Korean pub near my apartment with an old coworker. I think about all the queer creatives who spend endless hours working or sharing ideas in all the bars and cafes around LA. We deserve something with our queerness at the center driving the vision.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the “Fingerjoint” & “Amador Architecture” story. Tell us more about the business.
The Fingerjoint will be the only lesbian bar in Los Angeles – we’re making a permanent physical space for queer people to have a cocktail and a conversation. We’re good at rethinking the industry standards. What does a bar look like that’s created through the female gaze? What does it feel like to be in a bar that isn’t prioritizing cis-men? I think that even those who have attended our pop-up bar events have felt the shift. It’s cosmic to be in a space that was created specifically for you. Amador Architecture is the current that underlies all of this.
Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Mostly, no. I have to want to make something happen and then actually ask the questions, learn, have those intimidating conversations, ask people to support me, cultivate those relationships in my life and Do. The. Work. The luck part is the serendipity of the timing of it all. That the right people seem to appear, and that our queer community is so very ready for this bar. That’s the fuel that’s making all of this a reality.
- Website: thefingerjoint.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @thefingerjoint
Portrait by: Steve Acevedo; All other photos by: Cassie LaRussa