This week, ahead of Pride 2018, Somerset House will screen Queertopia, a series of artist films reviewing the existence of queer communities and their spaces.
Put together by curator Gemma Rolls-Bentley in partnership with online gallery space Daata Editions, the highly anticipated series features a host of artists (hailing from everywhere from London to New York), including Holly Blakey (who has previously choreographed Florence + The Machine), Rindon Johnson, Zoe Marden, Rashaad Newsome, Hannah Quinlan + Rosie Hastings, Jacolby Satterwhite and Puck Verkade.
Reflecting on the LGBT+ experience, the series also takes a look at the community’s spaces – real and mythological – to explore ideas of identity and intimacy. From a stark look at the UK’s last remaining gay bars, to interpretive dances critiquing hyper-sexualised music videos, and even slightly creepy Sim-style footage of Kim Kardashian, it’s not one to miss.
“For the queer community, their historical spaces were often underground and their inhabitants were silenced, and even now, queer spaces are underfunded and underprioritised. The artists included in Queertopia memorialise those historical spaces, uncover traces of the queer experience through popular culture and pay tribute to our ancestors through their practice,” explains Gemma Rolls-Bentley.
“The films use moments and motifs of queerness in pop culture as cornerstones of the futuristic vision that we’re presented with, asking us to consider whose responsibility it is to recant and record the history of our community and how it might need to be redressed in order to preserve our legacy.”
Queertopia kicks off today at Somerset House