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Homeland for the Vagabond - Sofia Queer Forum 2018

Boryana Rossa & Stanimir Panayotov, Sofia

Sofia Queer Forum is an event that investigates, with the means of contemporary arts, gender and sexuality as parallel systems through which we value ourselves and the others around us. These systems have a strong influence on all aspects of culture and society. The influence is, of course, two-sided. This is why in focus here is also the changing of the concepts “gender” and “sexuality” depending on social, political, cultural and medical factors that are inherent in a given time and space. 


During the last century, the issue of gender equality finds various representations in the history of Bulgarian arts and culture. This issue is always treated in relation with concept such as parenthood, sexuality, ethnic, national and class background, professional realization and education, access to basic human rights, among which are the right to labor, the freedom of speech and expression, etc. In the context of this forum, these interrelations acquire a contemporary dimension in keeping with the problems of today’s society.


Sofia Queer Forum is not only a platform for the representation of art with specific issues, but it also has the aim to provide space for generating ideas and creative stimulus by meeting different generations and cultures.

Website: https://sofiaqueerforum.org


The poster of Sofia Queer Forum 2018.
Photo courtesy Sofia Queer Forum.

Sofia Queer Forum 2018: Homeland for the Vagabond
art festival
09 - 10 November 2018, Sofia

Sofia Queer Forum 2018: Homeland for the Vagabond is the sixth edition of the forum. This year it was focused on the question of how the concepts of “queer” and "queer identity" are changing during a time of increasing austerity, deregulation, poverty, growing racism, nationalisms (including homo-nationalism), social segregation and discrimination?  

Curators of the forum were Mahamad Salemi and Patrick Shabus. They had invited artists who work in the intersection of queer and immigrant identity, the identity of the alien. Works by Alphabet Collection, Bruce LaBruce, Barbara Hammer, Borjana Ventzislavova and Viron Erol Vert were shown at Vaska Emanouilova Gallery, Sofia.

The artist talk by Viron Erol Vert at Fabrika Avtonomia (the second location of the forum this year) was followed by a discussion with the curators, the artist Borjana Ventsislavova, João Florêncio (Lecturer in History of Modern and Contemporary Art and Visual Culture at the University of Exeter), Viktoria Draganova (director, Swimming Pool, Sofia) and Neda Genova (Goldsmiths University, dВЕРСИЯ magazine) and a party with Julieta Intergalaktika.