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 Melanin Pride Festival II
October 11 - 13, 2019 

Melanin Pride Festival is a renaissance in celebration and recognition of  LGBTQ+, non-binary people of color in film and visual arts. The MPF features film screenings, an art exhibition, talks/panels dedicated to our experiences, innovation and narratives. MPF's mission is to amplify the voices, magnify the visibility of underrepresented and marginalized populations.  Through  partnerships and collaborations,  we hope to create a network that will help expand the importance of the creating and sustaining platforms for LGBTQ+ POC filmmakers, creatives, and visual artists.

The 2019 MPF is co-hosted by the Museum of Fine Arts, The Paramount/ArtsEmerson, The Brattle Theatre, Roxbury Innovation Center and Wicked Queer


The Festival is proudly supported by our community partners: Bisexual Resource Center, Boston Black PrideThe Fenway Institute, Massachusetts Trans Women Leadership (MTWL), Boston's Women's Film Festival, Boston Spirit Magazine , GLBTQ Advocates & Defenders (GLAD), Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC) , Men of Melanin Magic (MoMM), OUTFest,  The Theater Offensive and The Network/La Red.







The 2019 Melanin Pride Art Exhibition is a space curated for LGBTQ+, non-binary people of color visual artists & activists to showcase, convene and connect with community - includes a reception and discussion with emerging and established artists.

2019 Melanin Pride Art Exhibition

"Every single line means something" - Jean - Michel Basquiat

Saturday, October 12th at 4PM

Roxbury Innovation Center

2300 Washington Street, 2nd Floor | Boston, Ma

Sponsored by 



Tickets available through 10/10/19 - Space is limited  









Featured Artists include: 

Payal Kumar (they,she) is diasporic dreamer working towards inclusive solidarity and liberation. Their visual work draws on Desi folk art and Americana tattoos to construct new in-between spaces that explore mental

illness, queerness, and intimacy. By cultivating playful intergenerational dialogues, they aim to blur the binary between body and time-space so we can fully unearth and activate our collective power.


Brandi “Noire” La Zard ‘s (she/her) work explores her life-long curiosity and fascination with form. Specifically, typography and architecture have directly influenced her artistic approach, aesthetic. The forms are created through free association; in addition, predetermined forms are used as the catalyst to develop the overall composition. Merging gestural mark-making with structured line-drawing dominate the overall composition. In this realm of competing styles of mark-making (gestural, precision mark-making), the works highlight the desire to create freedom, harmony, and balance between those worlds.


Stephanie Machore’s non-representational work stems out her love of creating unidentifiable landscapes. Machore’s works represent unseen spaces or portals – the idea is, we unknowingly pass through energies and spaces daily. Does it alter who we are?

Lilly Rose Valore (she/her), dancer and transgender activist, is a fearless, unique, and incredibly talented dream chaser. After an intense battle with self-identity and expression, Lilly made her way into the hallowed halls of the prestigious dance school, Boston Conservatory. After graduating, she became a successful dance instructor teaching all types of classes and levels of expertise. 

2019 Melanin Pride Festival Film Screening Schedule

Friday, October 11 to Sunday, October 13

Friday, October 11th – Opening Night | 8:00 PM 

Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) | 465 Huntington Ave, Boston | Purchase Tickets Here

Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex, Fashion & Disco | Directed by James Crump | 95mins

USA, 2017

Co-presenters: Wicked Queer, The Fenway Institute, Men of Melanin Magic


Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco is a time capsule of Paris and New York between 1969 and 1973 as viewed through the eyes of Antonio Lopez (1943-1987), the dominant fashion illustrator of the time. A native of Puerto Rico and raised in The Bronx, Antonio was a seductive arbiter of style and glamour who, beginning in the 1960s, brought elements of the urban street to a postwar fashion world desperate for change and diversity. Counted among Antonio’s discoveries—muses of the period—were iconic beauties such as Grace Jones, Jessica Lange, and Jerry Hall, as well as Warhol Superstars Donna Jordan, Jane Forth and Patti D’Arbanville. Antonio’s inner circle was also comprised of his romantic and creative partner, Juan Ramos, makeup artist Corey Tippin, photographer Bill Cunningham, and rival designers Karl Lagerfeld and Yves Saint-Laurent. All these characters and more come together to create a vivid portrait of Antonio Lopez and the revolutionary fashion world he helped create.


Saturday, October 12th | 12:30 PM

Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) | 465 Huntington Ave, Boston | Purchase Tickets here

Melanin Queer Existence is Resistance | Directed by Various | 119 mins

Co – presenter(s):  OUTFest, Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC), Bisexual Resource Center, Boston Black Pride


A profound selection of QTPoC+ short films that highlight changing narratives and the importance of magnifying our visibility.


Origin |Directed by Simone Lyles | USA | 19 min
In 1982, Kora's self-help conversion tapes only seem to push her closer to the truth about her feelings for her best friend Gina.


Other Loving | Directed by Lise Angelica Johnson | USA | 7 min
A woman experiencing heartbreak rediscovers love in an unconventional way.


I Know Her  |Directed by Fawzia Mirza | USA | 3 min

In the afterglow of a seemingly fated hookup, two women realize that perhaps they have a little too much in common.


Fran this Summer | Directed by Mary Evangelista|USA|9 min

Teenage lovebirds Fran and Angie spend the summer at home while Fran begins their transition. They must face who and what they mean to each other when they visit the beach, their love on display for all to see.


Engaged | Directed by David Scala | USA | 17 min
Is the world conspiring against Darren proposing to his boyfriend or is it self-sabotage?


Clash | Directed by Amrou Al-Kadhi | United Kingdom | 8 min
Does Britain's obsession with period dramas erase the landscape of the country today?


Going Forward | Directed by Tim Harris | USA | 15 min
Malcolm Kenyatta is campaigning to become the first openly LGBT candidate of color elected to state office in Pennsylvania.


Sweetheart Dancers |Directed by Ben-Alex Dupris | USA | 14 min
A Two-Spirit couple are determined to rewrite the rules of Native American culture through their participation in the "Sweetheart Dance."


Baby | Directed by Jesse Levandov|USA|7 min

A queer coming-of-age love story that confronts themes of LGBTQ identity and toxic masculinity. Through a striking visual language that is both elegant and gritty at the same time, Baby captures life in New York City and young queer love with a raw authenticity.


Decoding Darkmatter |Directed by Crystal Waterton | USA | 22 min
LGBTQ activists and performers Alok Vaid-Menon and Janani Balasubramanian discuss being trans and South Asian, and how it’s not about the “costume.”


Saturday, October 12th | 7:00 PM

The Paramount | 559 Washington St., Boston | Purchase Tickets Here

The Garden Left Behind | Directed by Flavio Alves | 88 mins

USA/Brazil , 2019

Co-presenter(s): Massachusetts Trans Women Leadership (MTWL), Boston Latino International Film Festival (BLIFF), The Network/La Red, Latinx Pride

The Garden Left Behind traces the relationship between Tina (Carlie Guevara), a young Mexican trans woman, and Eliana (Miriam Cruz), her grandmother, as they navigate Tina's transition and struggle to build a life for themselves as undocumented immigrants in New York City. As Tina begins the process of transitioning, Eliana struggles to understand Tina and fears that their life together in America is no longer what they bargained for. Tina finds camaraderie in a small but mighty transgender advocate group, but soon, Tina ends up having to fight for the life that she’s meant to live – facing violent threats, seemingly insurmountable medical costs, questions about her legal immigration status, and increasing skepticism from the man she loves. She begins to lose all hope, but has unknowingly become the only hope for a shy young man who has been watching her closely from afar. Directed by Flavio Alves and featuring an authentic cast, with transgender actors in trans roles and Latinx performers in Latinx roles, THE GARDEN LEFT BEHIND also stars Anthony Abdo, Tamara Williams, Ivana Black, Kristen Lovell, Danny Flaherty, Alex Kruz, Michael Madsen, and Ed Asner.


Sunday, October 13th | 3:00 PM

Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) | 465 Huntington Ave, Boston | Purchase Tickets Here

UNSETTLED: Seeking Refuge in America | Directed by Tom Shepard | 84 mins

USA/Lebanon/Canada, 2019

Co-presenter(s): GLAD,  Boston Black Pride


A powerful examination of the global refugee crisis from the overlooked perspective of LGBT asylum seekers, UNSETTLED follows four brave individuals from Africa and the Middle East who have fled homophobic violence sanctioned by their home countries and families of origin. Beginning anew, Cheyenne and Mari (Angolan), Subhi (Syrian), and Junior (Congolese) face immense barriers to securing work, housing, and legal assistance. Fighting isolation and depression, they share stories that form an unflinching picture of nearly insurmountable challenges.


 Sunday, October 13th - Closing Night | 7:00 PM

Purchase Tickets Here

The Brattle Theatre | 40 Brattle St., Cambridge

Surviving with Wild Tongues * Sobreviviendo Con Lenguas Indomables | Directed by Genevieve Rodriguez | 16 mins

USA, 2018

Co Host: The Network La/Red

Este es un cortometraje guiado por supervivientes de color queer/transgénerx, que centra las vidas y las experiencias de personas transgénerx, queer, negrxs, indígenas, inmigrantes, personas de color y/o sobrevivientes de la clase trabajadora de abuso de pareja. El cortometraje tiene un contexto poderoso y lenguaje explícito.

This is a queer/trans people of color survivor-led short film project that centers the lives and experiences of transgender, queer, black, brown, indigenous, immigrant, people of color and/or working class survivors of partner abuse. It contains powerful context and explicit language.

Sidney & Friends | Directed by Tristan Aitchison |75 mins  *Boston Premiere* 

Scotland/Kenya 2018

Co-presenter(s): The Fenway Institute, GLAD, Boston Black Pride, The Network La/Red


When his family tries to kill him, Sidney, who is intersex, flees to Nairobi where he meets a group of transgender friends. Together, they fight discrimination and discover life, love and self-worth. Feature documentary SIDNEY & FRIENDS is a heartfelt exploration of the hopes, dreams, and everyday reality of a group of intersex and transgender friends fighting to survive on the edge of Kenyan society. Join Sidney and his new friends as they share what it is like to grow up and live as a gender minority, in a region known for prejudice and discrimination against its LGBTI population. Filmed over 4 years, our friends reveal the secrets of their struggles with poignancy and sometimes also humor. The premise is simple: it’s about gender, friendship… and love.

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Suite No. 12 in 18 
by Noire 
by payal kumar
Wood Collage #2 
by Stephanie Machore
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