29 October 2009

Report: Chubsters Gang Meeting in Hamburg

Back in March the London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival at the British Film Institute hosted an event called Invasion of the Chubsters. Ines Voigt and Gesine Claus from Hamburg's Lesbisch Schwule Filmtage were there. Ines had the idea of doing something similar in Germany, she emailed me and eventually we worked something out and it all pulled together.

So last week we all held a Chubster Gang Meeting in Hamburg, at a beautiful cinema called B-Movie, as part of the film festival. The event was supported and documented by Bildwechsel, an incredible feminist-queer-trans-etc archive and arts organisation. The screening sold out, some people sat in the aisles, and the atmosphere was warm and friendly and good.

We showed our miniature Chubster video, and some footage from the Fat of the Land. I talked about some film clips of Divine and Marianne S├Ągebrecht, and showed off a lot. There were some short films by and about fat queer themes, and time for questions and answers afterwards.

There were some subsidiary events too: Butch Husky, Weasel and I were interviewed on the red sofa at the Nachtbar, an amazing semi-squatted after-hours club and hangout that exists for the duration of the festival. It was a hoot. I got interviewed for the super-duper Hugs and Kisses magazine, here's the English version (.pdf, 56kb).

It was a big thrill to attend the festival. I dream of queer-fat culture that isn't in English. I wonder if at last I can start to look east into Europe and beyond, rather than west to the US, for rad fat community and activism. I hope so. The festival hosted some impressive work, and I feel excited by the possibilities for building links in Germany and beyond.

I want to give gigantic and grateful thanks to Ines and Gesine for welcoming me and my fellow Chubsters to Hamburg. Thanks also to the excellent Bildwechsel, Hugs and Kisses, and the Filmtage organisers for making our stay a complete delight.

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