Tom of Finland Art & Culture Festival 2020: Trendy
Like most events this year, the Tom of Finland Art & Culture Festival is live for its 2020 installment. The 25th incarnation of the festival coincides with the centenary of the legendary gay erotic artist.
The festival is both a celebration of Touko Laaksonen’s incredible contribution to pop and visual culture, and a vital opportunity for the queer community to come together at an unusually isolating time in history.
“As a community, we have faced so much: experiencing the devastation of HIV / AIDS, fighting the rampant censorship of how we create and express ourselves, and maintaining bonds during the great social change and COVID-19, ”said festival co-founder Durk Dehner. “Being able to come together right now is so vital to us.”
Instead of taking place at Tom of Finland House, the iconic bungalow in Echo Park where the festival is historically held, it will take place on a custom website this year. This digital festival, which starts this Friday, aims to support artists by offering them a way to present and sell their works.
The Festival will feature artist “booths” and virtual events throughout the weekend. Panel events include: “Leather History and Fetish Talk with Durk Dehner and Special Guests” and “Overlaps: Art + Identity + Activism with Ron Athey, Cassils and Rafa Esparza”.
“This festival is not only a platform for promoting queer art and queer artists, but also a gathering place where all queer communities can come together,” said Rubén Esparza, festival coordinator and founder of the Queer Biennale. Participants have the chance to connect with artists, see performances, watch video installations, draw and listen to panel discussions, and celebrate all that is LGBTQ +, erotic, taboo and marginal.
The festival takes place from December 11 to 13 at tomoffinland.org/artfair.
To dive deeper into all things Tom of Finland, read our retrospective on 100 Years of Power, Corruption and Cum.