Queer|Art|Film Sets Fall 2017 Season at IFC Center
Curated by filmmakers Ira Sachs, Adam Baran, and Vanessa Haroutunian, the season brings together an eclectic mix of independent, experimental, and Hollywood cinema, presented by a multigenerational mashup of queer punks, poets, photographers, and cinema legends.
The season features a special experimental shorts program on the evening of December 4 (organized with legendary experimental filmmaker Barbara Hammer), which coincides with the announcement of the winner of the first-ever Barbara Hammer Lesbian Experimental Filmmaking Grant.
A full itinerary follows. All screenings begin at 8pm.
Monday, September 11
Alexander Chee presents Another Country
(Marek Kanievska, 1984)
"Convention outraged...a class abandoned...a country betrayed!" Marek Kanievska's 1984 film ANOTHER COUNTRY stars Rupert Everett and Colin Firth as outcasts united in a battle for truth and honor at an all-boys boarding school in 1930s England. Loosely based on the youth of real-life spy Guy Burgess, the film made a deep impact on tonight's presenter - fiction writer, poet, and journalist - Alexander Chee. Inspired by Everett's portrayal of a young man who lives in full possession of his sexuality and is unwilling to "play the game", Chee says, "the film set me on fire to live openly as a gay man, to fight for what I believed in, and to make art that reflected this."
Julian Schnabel's riveting adaptation of Reinaldo Arenas' memoir follows the gay Cuban poet and novelist (portrayed by Javier Bardem) from childhood to death. Stops along the way include copious amounts of sexual exploration, fighting with Castro's rebels, and an escape from prison (with a cameo assist from Johnny Depp in drag). His struggles continue when he arrives in NYC at the dawn of the AIDS crisis. For our guest presenter, photographer Luna Luis Ortiz, Arenas' LIFE STORY echoes his own experiences as "being gay, an artist, Latino and living with HIV." Ortiz' photos are currently featured in the exhibition AIDS at Home at the Museum of the City of New York.
Monday, November 6
Aye Nako presents Pariah
(Dee Rees, 2011)
In Dee Rees' extraordinary debut, a queer teen (Adepero Oduye) in Brooklyn struggles to find love and acceptance from both her religious family and the women who frequent her local dyke club. Pariah defied Hollywood naysayers who said films about queer Black youth couldn't find an audience, winning awards and paving the way for Moonlight. For our guest presenters, the superb queer punk band Aye Nako, Pariah was a revelation. Vocalist/guitarist Mars Ganito writes, "As a teen, I watched so many queer films, but it never occurred to me that a queer coming of age film could be centered around a Black kid. At 25, Pariah was one of the first times I saw myself in queer cinema."
Monday, December 4
Barbara Hammer presents "The Hammer Mix"
Tonight we celebrate legendary experimental filmmaker Barbara Hammer with a special mix of the lady-made movies that have inspired her prolific career. Some of the avant-garde's most influential women will be represented: Valie Export, Nancy Holt, Martha Rosler, Carolee Schneeman, among others. Hammer writes, "As a young female filmmaker I looked for predecessors. And they were there with gorgeous work that taught and inspired me. These short films are timeless and can give both aspiring and accomplished filmmakers of today the same jolt of energy and investigative CURIOSITY they did for me in the 70s. Let's enjoy together once again!"
"The Hammer Mix" coincides with the announcement of the winner of the first-ever Barbara Hammer Lesbian Experimental Filmmaking Grant, who will be recognized at the screening. The Barbara Hammer Lesbian Experimental Filmmaking Grant is a new annual grant that will be awarded to self-identified lesbians for making visionary moving-image art. The $5,000 grant is supported directly by funds provided by Hammer's estate and administered through Queer|Art by lesbians for lesbians, with a rotating panel of judges. Applications for the first year of the Barbara Hammer Lesbian Experimental Filmmaking Grant opened August 1st, and will close September 30th, 2017. The judges, who have been selected by Hammer to review applications for the first year of the grant, include filmmakers Cheryl Dunye and Dani Leventhal. Hammer herself will be a third judge.
"The Hammer Mix" has been organized in conjunction with Leslie-Lohman's retrospective exhibition "Barbara Hammer: Evidentiary Bodies" (October 7, 2017 - January 28, 2018). The exhibitionwill bring together both known and previously unseen works of film and video, installations, works on paper, and material from Hammer's archive. This exhibition will address critical themes that appear in Hammer's work, including: lesbian representation, subjectivity and sexuality; intimacy and sensation; and conditions and maintenance of life and illness
Queer|Art launched in 2009 to support a generation of LGBTQ artists that lost mentors to the AIDS Crisis of the 1980s. By fostering the confident expression of LGBTQ artists' perspectives, stories, and identities, Queer|Art gives voice to a population that has been historically suppressed, disenfranchised, and often overlooked by traditional institutional and economic support systems. The current programs of Queer|Art include the year-long Queer|Art|Mentorship program, and the long-running Queer|Art|Film series, held monthly at the IFC Center in lower Manhattan.
The Queer|Art|Mentorship program, launched in 2010, produces an evolving intergenerational dialogue within the LGBTQ arts community that has a direct impact on the landscape of contemporary art and culture as a whole. The program, which pairs emerging and established artists in a year-long exchange, has propelled the careers of a new generation of creators. Queer|Art|Film, now in its eighth year, provides a space for invited artists to honor those who came before them and whose work continues to inspire them, further charting a uniquely queer cultural lineage through cinema to other artistic disciplines.
A list of the intergenerational community of artists supported and brought together by Queer|Art includes: Silas Howard, Jennie Livingston, Matt Wolf, Hilton Als, Sarah Schulman, Pamela Sneed, Justin VivIan Bond, Jibz Cameron, Trajal Harrell, John Kelly, Caden Manson, Everett Quinton, Geo Wyeth, Angela Dufresne, Nicole Eisenman, Avram Finkelstein, Chitra Ganesh, Pati Hertling, Jonathan Katz, Reina Gossett, Sasha Wortzel, Jess Barbagallo, Morgan Bassichis, Monstah Black, Yve Laris Cohen, iele paloumpis, Rebecca Patek, Justin Sayre, Colin Self, Justine Williams, Michael De Angelis, Jacolby Satterwhite, Rick Herron, and Hugh Ryan, among many others.