9th international feminist and queer festival Red DawnsMarch 5th to 9th 2008, Autonomous Cultural Center Metelkova mesto, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Festival Red Dawns is organised by association KUD Mreža in cooperation with many friends, supporters and volunteers. This year, the festival is also generously supported by EYFA, an organisation based in Amsterdam which connected Amsterdam, Graz and Ljubljana with a project entitled Trilogy: Women Crossing Communities.
What we’ve set out to accomplish with this year's festival is not easy: we would like to enable connections between art and activism, activism and theory, theory and art. So that, when the caravan of artists, activists and theorists is moving on, we won’t be left with unforgettable memories and broken hearts alone, but with something more… palpable. For instance, with the open-code programming knowledge of the The GenderChangers collective, or the auto-repair skills offered by Ksenija Glavač, or the burn-out prevention techniques taught by Belgrade’s Žene na delu (Women at Work), and the viewpoints of no less than sixty feminists that confront global capitalism in a fat book called New Feminisms; Queer and Networking Conditions. No doubt, we will also be left with another girl in love from this or that other, starless Europe. She will try hard to persuade Slovenian authorities that it’s not the country she fell in love with, but that she’s prepared to do anything (marry, registrer, whatever they want) to stay here with the woman, man, the beloved and wonderful being of her choice.
But we also want to poke the sores that hurt; those caused by the personified fist of patriarchal, falogocentric and heteronormative (in short, too common) violence against women, children and men that are not »manly enough«. Emeli Röndahl is going to ease the pain with a needle and thread in her Bloody Normssewing workshop. Dancers Nina Fajdiga and Jasmina Križaj will cope with the burden of »real femininity« with aching and abrupt motions; stage director, writer and actress Simona Semenič will regard an ill woman as a victim and then, with great pleasure, relieve her of that status. Urška Sterle will starve out and disable every lesbian that would dare to even softly strike another lesbian, feminist or, god forbid, any »ordinary woman« with her courage. Can you imagine, how it would be if all of us suddenly came out of the closet! In fact, many women do stick out of closets and averages in spite of their pain. We've met them in fairy tales, too. The opening night of the festival is dedicated to them, to (fairy tale) heroines who examine rules and norms in the only way possible: by courageously, even desperately violating them – and living their lives.