Fringe of Colour Festival: A Celebration of Queer Artists of Colour Breaking Boundaries

Embracing Diversity: Fringe of Colour Festival Puts Queer Artists of Colour in the Spotlight

Fringe of Colour Festival: A Celebration of Queer Artists of Colour Breaking Boundaries


The Fringe of Colour Films Festival is a vibrant showcase of films, discussions, and performances by queer artists of colour from around the globe. Discover how this festival challenges the norms and creates a space for diverse voices.

The Fringe of Colour Films Festival, running until June 29, is an eclectic collection of films, panel discussions, and poetry performances, spotlighting the creative works of queer artists of colour from around the world.

The festival, which has evolved into an award-winning initiative with both online and in-person screenings, aims to move beyond mere representation. Jess Brough, the festival’s director and founder, emphasizes that the festival is about existing outside the predominantly white, heteronormative structures and creating a space for authentic expression. This is encapsulated in the festival’s slogan, “A hybrid arts festival for us, by us.”

The “us” here is significant, as it includes not just people of colour but specifically queer people of colour. The festival subtly embraces queerness, ensuring safety for artists from regions where openly identifying as queer may be perilous.

The festival’s lineup includes a plethora of films that speak to the experiences of queer people of colour. One such film, “Still We Thrive” by Campbell X, is a poetic narration celebrating queer Black resilience, featuring Trinidadian-British actor Don Warrington. Another captivating film, “Bateria,” explores gay cruising in Havana, capturing the contrast between the narrator’s closeted home life and the freedom found in spaces of gay intimacy.

Fringe of Colour also highlights the power of film as a medium. Jess Brough points out that film allows people, even those in remote or isolated areas, to connect with stories and experiences that resonate with them. This is particularly empowering for queer individuals who may feel alone in their experiences.

The festival also features films that challenge societal norms. “(Tending) (to) (Ta)” by non-binary writer April Lin, for instance, is a mesmerizing tale that contrasts the constraints of urban life with a utopian world of leisure and connection to nature. “Soft Bwoi” is another film that unapologetically reclaims queer masculinities within Jamaican sound-system culture.

While the festival gained media attention in 2020 during the global conversations on anti-Black racism, Brough notes that sustaining interest in art by queer artists of colour remains a challenge. However, the Fringe of Colour team remains undeterred and hopeful that by creating a space for these voices, the audience will continue to engage and support.

The Fringe of Colour Films Festival is not just a celebration of art; it is a statement, a movement, and a space for queer artists of colour to thrive. Through its diverse and powerful lineup, the festival invites audiences to engage with stories that challenge, inspire, and resonate on a deeper level.

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