The eighth annual GFEST-Gaywise festival is set to open in London on Monday, showcasing the work of LGBTIQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender,, intersex and queer) filmmakers, artists and performers from around the world. In a context where equality in the UK has improved significantly but LGBTIQ people still face significant dangers i places like Russia and Uganda, it sets out to warn against complacency. The cinematic segment of the festival will run from 17 to 18 November at the ArtHouse Crouch End, opening with Michael J Saul's thoughtful film about a young man's search for identity, The Surface.
With many small festivals now targeting the same audience, we asked festival director Niranjan Kamatkar to tell us what's special about this one. "This year’s GFEST – Gaywise FESTival films look at narratives from a young person’s perspective," he told us. "The film programme is unique in a way that the films will provide inspiration to all young LGBTQI and aspiring filmmakers to create their own works."
The festival is presented by arts charity Wise Thoughts, which works on social justice issues and aims to address the needs of minority communities. We will be bringing you reviews of some of the short films scheduled to screen at the ArtHouse.