Last year, the inaugural Queer Spectra Arts Festival (QSAF) hosted over 30 LGBTQ+ artists to showcase their works in dance, poetry, photography, sculpture, painting, and more. Over 300 audience members attended the multidisciplinary festival, which focused on the theme of “BE/LONGING” and investigated the spaces where art and queerness collide.  

The event was praised by audiences as being “an amazing, radically welcoming, and powerfully affirming event” and participating artists stated that it is “exactly what Salt Lake City needed.” QSAF organizers are proud to bring the festival back for its second year and continue the festival’s mission to “create a space for safe and nuanced conversations between audiences and artists about queer idenity and art.” 

Like 2019, the 2020 QSAF will feature artists from all over the country. The festival theme, “The Risk of Representation,” interrogates the importance of LGBTQ+ representation in art, which is often considered taboo or is subject to censure. The Festival will host a virtual gallery for audiences to explore over the course of the weekend. Additionally, audiences can experience live-streamed dance performances, as well as a workshop, two artist panels, and a live-streamed keynote presentation.

QSAF is honored to announce the 2020 keynote will be presented by performance artist Ya-Ya Fairley. A graduate of the University of Utah’s Dance MFA program, Ya-Ya is a mover and dance-maker who recently completed Headlong Performance Institute, a premier training residency for experimental performance makers in Philadelphia. Ya-Ya’s works have explored femininity, domesticity, race, and cultural identity. 

In an effort to prevent the continued spread of COVID-19 and protect the Salt Lake City community from unnecessary exposure to the coronavirus, the 2020 QSAF will be held entirely online. QSAF is free, but organizers ask that audience members consider making a donation of $5-10 to cover production costs, and support LGBTQ+ artists whenever possible.