NEW YORK PREMIERE
Co-sponsored: Groundfloor Collective
In 1984, poet/activist/lesbian Audre Lorde went to Germany for treatment of cancer. Her years there not only marked a resurgence of her written work (The Cancer Journals) but also the development of a vibrant Afro German community. Afro Germans are plagued by invisibility There are no official census of Blacks in Germany and until 1984 (and the publication of Farbe Kenne (Many Colors) they were simply referred to as “War Babies” (The off spring of Black soldiers). Audre Lorde intitated a gathering of Afro German men and women which resulted in the 1987 anthology Farbe Bekennen(Many Colors). 25 years later, the Afro German community continues to organize for self determination and recognition. Tonight’s program highlight’s the work of Juli Rivera, a Black gender non conforming anti genetrification activist. Her three fillms deal with the growing genetrification of the neighborhood of Kreutzberg, a working class hub in Berlin, as well as the day to day racism and brutality found in Germany. Through their* work we see a vibrant composite of the contemporary German scene.
*Please note the artist choose “they” instead of “he or she”.
Juli(a) Rivera’s Statement
[I was born in 1984] in the German Democratic Republic. (Parents Angola and Germany) Juli Rivera is an Afro-German gender non-conforming film maker who lives and works in Berlin and Toronto. They are an activist in various communities like the Black and Queer Communities in Germany and Canada. They started in Leipzig (East Germany) as a Photography and Performance artist. Their latest work is centered about Queer families and “non western gender concepts.” Besides the fabuloussness, they studied European Antropology and Gender Studies in Berlin and have been an exchange student to Tornto in Gender Studies. They work inwith various queer family programmers at the Centre for women and trans people and hosted film screenings. Juli(a) Rivera’s first documentary Mein Viertel 100 (translated “My quarter of 100”) made in 2011, is the first documentary from a member of the Black community about the Black community in Germany. It talks about an annual meeting which was highly inspired by Audre Lorde during her visit in Germany in 1984. It was produced without any funding and is a work that could just only exist with the help and goodwill of the people who run the anual meeting of Afro Germans for over 25 years.
The other 2 short films: gentrification celebration This movie talks about the significant gentrification in a mostly people of colour area in Berlin, Kreuzberg. It shows with humor the dynamics of gentrification and how it effected the filmmaker themselves to react to that by taking a position within this game. (No budget movie with a taste of fancyness) the decadence of your starvation:a short performance piece of creating a Black Queer German Narrative within the mainstream voices. (No-budget movie and happy with that.)