Inspired by Marlon Riggs

Inspired by Marlon Riggs

5 Episodes

In 1994, Marlon Riggs died from AIDS at the tragically young age of thirty-seven. Riggs’s untimely passing robbed the world of an artist of uncommon vision and empathy, but not of his work’s ability to galvanize and inspire future generations. This program comprises a selection of stylistically and thematically diverse short films by contemporary Black and queer artists who have taken cues from Riggs to create works of empathy, playfulness, and intellectual rigor. From soul-searching dance to sensual drama, erotic expression to self-acceptance, these films are infused with Riggs’s generous spirit.

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Inspired by Marlon Riggs
  • Walk for Me

    Episode 1

    Directed by Elegance Bratton • 2016 • United States
    Starring Aaliyah King, Yolonda Ross, Brenda Holder

    A teenager explores her transgender identity through voguing and ball culture—but is her mom ready to accept her for who she is?

  • 100 Boyfriends Mixtape

    Episode 2

    Directed by Brontez Purnell • 2016 • United States

    In Brontez Purnell’s “video mixtape,” unlikely antihero DeShawn—an HIV-positive Black gay man haunted by the ghosts of 100 men—relates his philosophy of the world to an unknown caller on his landline while magically shrink-fitting a new pair of ...

  • A Drop of Sun Under the Earth

    Episode 3

    Directed by Shikeith • 2017 • United States

    A compassionate encounter transforms a shy Black boy and the emotional and sexual traumas lodged in his body in this experimental work informed by the writings of Audre Lorde.

  • The Labyrinth 1.0

    Episode 4

    Directed by Tiona Nekkia McClodden • 2017 • United States

    Mixing 16 mm surveillance footage, 1970s tearoom porn, and structuralist film footage shot in North Philadelphia, this poetic film essay—inspired by the writing of Black gay poet Brad Johnson—visually explores the concept of the labyrinth...

  • A Guide to Breathing Underwater

    Episode 5

    Directed by Raven Jackson • 2018 • United States

    Traversing New York City, a dancer seeks freedom and peace through movement.