Documentaries for Pride

Even though Pride events and in-person festivities are cancelled this year, it is still possible to celebrate LGBTQ resilience from the comfort of your home – and the Library can help with that! Aside from going out to protests and engaging with written content by queer authors, there are also lots of video resources available to you with your library card. Your barcode and PIN number will give you access to lots of documentaries, movies, and other online video content through platforms such as Kanopy. Here are three great queer history documentaries of varying lengths to get you started:

After Stonewall. A 90-minute documentary from filmmakers Dan Hunt, Janet Baus, and John Scagliotti, After Stonewall details the LGBTQ rights movement beginning in the early 1970s until the end of the 20th century. It is the sequel to Before Stonewall, which focuses on the fight for LGBTQ rights prior to the movement’s watershed moment with the riots of 1969. After is particularly poignant in its treatment of the ordeals that LGBTQ people went through during the AIDS crisis of the 1980s and how this political crisis impacted the type of activism that the movement turned towards at the end of the century. Continue reading “Documentaries for Pride”

Escapism Through the Documentary

Documentaries gives us a peek into the window of someone else’s reality, and in these very unusual times, a glimpse into a place where the real world is not upended and devastated by a global panic sounds quite comforting. While during “normal” times, one might escape through fantasy, sci-fi, or a very engrossing drama, during the era of COVID-19, why not try the documentary?

Nanook of the North movie poster

Documentary film first began as the creation of brief, informational videos and has evolved over time to become more observational, expository, and entertaining. One of the most significant early documentaries is Nanook of the North , a 1922 chronicle of an Inuit man and his family in Northern Canada. Often hailed as a significant cultural achievement, Nanook is an excellent example for critically thinking about the art of documentary filmmaking. Who is controlling the narrative, and how has the filmmaker influenced the audience’s response to what they’re seeing on screen? Continue reading “Escapism Through the Documentary”

Here’s Looking at You!: Documentary Films about Artists

An artist’s life can be as compelling as the work they produce. A documentary, at best, strives to render a portrait of the artist as honestly as possible. This, of course, is as close as any of us will get to being in the same room with a person whose life and work draws us in.  What will you find that you do not, already, know?  Will this new view enhance the experience of the art or detract from it?

Continue reading “Here’s Looking at You!: Documentary Films about Artists”

Streetwise Revisited: Library Resources

Follow us throughout the fall for posts which highlight library resources and information that supports the Tiny: Streetwise Revisited exhibit at the Central Library and its community programming.

Tiny Streetwise RevisitedThe Seattle Public Library is hosting the Streetwise Revisited: A 30-year Journey photography exhibit by Mary Ellen Mark exploring the lives of youth and families experiencing homelessness.

It begins next Thursday, September 15 through Thursday, November 3 at the Central Library in the Level 8 Gallery.  Public programs will take place in library and community locations.

For more information about the Exhibit and a calendar of the programs and film screenings, please visit the Streetwise Revisited page. Continue reading “Streetwise Revisited: Library Resources”

Wheedle’s Groove: Seattle’s Forgotten Soul of the 1960s and ’70s

On June 2nd, as a part of the African American Film Series, we will be screening the documentary Wheedle’s Groove: Seattle’s Forgotten Soul of the 1960s and ’70s. This documentary, directed by Jennifer Maas, and distributed by local record label Light in the Attic Records, captures some of the heyday of Seattle’s soul, funk and R & B that was lost to time until avid record collector DJ Mr. Supreme came across some Seattle labels and amazing Seattle sounds. But Seattle’s living legends and fans remember, and Wheedle’s Groove brought this important history to life and back into the limelight. Continue reading “Wheedle’s Groove: Seattle’s Forgotten Soul of the 1960s and ’70s”