Art Film Fest to Introduce the Slovak Gay & Lesbian Film Festival

The story of the Slovak Gay & Lesbian Film Festival began in 1995 in the Slovak village of Tajov. It was the first festival of its kind organized in the former East Block, but not without protest from the public. Its second year in 1996 was also held in Tajov, followed by a three-year hiatus, after which the festival restarted and moved to Bratislava, continually annually up to now. For the eighth year in a row, the 2009 Slovak Gay & Lesbian Film Festival was held at the 35 mm Film Club at Bratislava’s Academy of Performing Arts. The festival began on Wednesday, 30.9 and lasted until Sunday, 4.10. In two cinema halls, viewers watched over thirty feature-length and short films. After the festival’s close, its best films were screened once again as Dozvuky FFi (Afterglow) at Aupark Shopping Center’s Palace Cinemas in Bratislava. Zuzana Kronerová has taken the festival under her patronage, and she is supporting this year’s edition as well.
The Slovak Gay & Lesbian Film Festival focuses on the presentation of European and global cinema on the topic of sexual minorities. The films featured at the festival capture the lives of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transsexuals. They portray the status of the homosexual minority in the past, while also offering a glimpse into the future, addressing contemporary issues. The festival is organized by a group of volunteers who consider the medium of film and film festivals as a convenient vehicle for the spread of ideas promoting an open civil society. The festival’s primary goal is to support the gay and lesbian community, and its organizers want to help break down inner barriers and counter stereotypes in the perceptions of society at large. It is an appeal to audiences to rethink the deep-rooted formulas on what should be, can be and must be.