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Saturday, January 16, 2021

Founder of Dirty Looks expresses the need for LGBTQ film screenings

By Rahwa Hailemariam 

The monthly Queens’ Vernacular curator talk featured Bradford Nordeen, founder and head programmer of Dirty Looks.

“I wanted to go to it [queer experimental film screenings] and it wasn’t there, so I was like ‘oh I will do it,’” Nordeen said. “And it was very impulsive.”

People of all different ages attended the April 26 talk in the Fine Arts Building at Western.

Opening the event with Luther Price’s Gar Har Clown short film, Nordeen broke the ice before his talk.

Luther Price sparked his love for experimental film, Nordeen said in his talk.

The talk consisted of a wide range of queer experimental film sneak peaks, an in-depth introduction to Nordeen’s organization, Dirty Looks.

Dirty Looks is a bicoastal platform for queer experimental film, video and performance founded January of 2011 according to Nordeen.

The nonprofit organization raises money through fundraising and individual donation.

After the first screening, Nordeen said he realized there was a desire for a program like Dirty Looks and that is how he created the organization.

The organization takes typical LGBTQ films made by different artists and does screenings, creating a platform for upcoming artists.

“To be able to find, learn, show and share the kind of representation I thrive on is everything to me,” Nordeen said.

Erick Vonmuller attended the talk and said the talk was excellent.

“It [the talk] was a reaffirmation of how language around homosexuality has changed. I was born in 1946 and I grew up in a world where there was no language [around homosexuality]” Vonmuller said. “If I had been born in 2017, I would have a different informative experience around my own sexuality.”

According to Nordeen, Dirty Looks is designed to trace “contemporary queer aesthetics through historical works.”

He said the organization is important to him because it always comes back to the queer community.

“It’s important to me because it’s centered in a very particular community that’s an enriching community but also giving back to it and growing from it,” Nordeen said.

Junior Hunter Long attended the talk. He said he came to talk because he is interested in video art.

“I am interested in the representations of the body and people as people,” Long said. “It’s a beautiful thing.

Dirty Looks is located in New York and Los Angeles, New York being the first location. It has two other programs within it: Dirty Looks Roadshow, a program that tours organizations, Universities, and events, and Dirty Looks: On Location, a biennial series that screens at specific sites, said Nordeen.

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