This article was published on July 13th, 2020
Even with the current social distancing taking place throughout the world, the one thing that will connect all mankind is art, a cornerstone of humanity that transfixes us all, no matter where and how we live. Queer Arts Festival has planned a production that will surprise everyone and serve as the perfect springboard for the rest of the artistic world to indulge in.
Serving as the visual arts component of 2020’s Queer Arts Festival, Wicked includes the Curated Visual Arts Exhibition and Pride in Art Community Exhibition from Thursday July 16th through Sunday July 26th. The curator of the event, Jonny Sopotiuk, described what spectators can expect over the course of the week and a half:
“Wicked brings together a multigenerational group of artists living and producing work across Canada and the United States as they explore the body, community, and architecture of homonormativity. In 2020 we’re learning to live through a new form of containment during a global health pandemic. Our long fight for recognition and the foundations of community infrastructures that we created to sustain us are being fundamentally questioned. With new connections and intimacy now mediated by requirements to shelter in place, artists critically examine our communities’ oppression and expose implications of complicity in the homonormative systems created to contain us.”
‘Wicked’ unapologetically celebrates queer traditions of the decadent and scandalous via visual art, theatre, performance, dance, music, and literary events in a digital venue. There is a lot to be explored during this extravaganza, with highlights including the visual arts curation of Jonny Sopotiuk, Noam Gagnon’s outrageous piece Swan Song, Indigenous Burlesque with Virago Nation’s Too Spirited, This Crazy Show, and the inimitable offerings of drag divas The Darlings.
What is the Queer Arts Festival all about?
QAF, as one of the top festivals in the world, is organized by professional multi-disciplinary artists in Vancouver, B.C. each year. Known for producing artwork that titillates and pushes against traditional boundaries, Queer Arts Festival weaves in themes that are tied together through a lineup that includes performing arts series, artist workshops, curated visual arts exhibitions, media screenings, and much more. Over the last few years, QAF has achieved substantial acclaim, voted ‘Best LGBTQ Event Event’ in Vancouver in 2019.
The following are three events during the week and a half that visitors should definitely check out:
Art Party! Cinq-à-Sept Festival Opening: It all kicks off on July 16th,, and lasts from 5 to 7pm. Expect a visual art tour that features several surprise guest stars and is headlined by Jonny Sopotiuk.
Too Spirited: On Friday, July 17th, Virago Nation – a troupe of indigenous burlesque performers – puts on a show that explores pop culture, humor, politics, and few other surprises that will dazzle and excite spectators.
Glitter Is Forever – Pajama Party: Get comfortable and cozy at this pajama party that starts at 4am and runs very late, making it the perfect time to enjoy those fancy martinis. The wardrobe suggestions include silk robes, beautiful lingerie, and expect the evening to serve up jaw-dropping performances and visual art that captivates.
Promising to serve up a wild and delicious raucous presentation that is second to none, this year’s ‘Wicked’ is destined to be the uniquely queer multi-dimensional digital experience that leaves visitors thirsty for more.