Monday, November 14, 2016

STOCKHOLM SALUTUE TO INTERNATIONAL ANTI-FASCIST  DAY

Stockholm -- Members of Tupilak (Nordic rainbow culture workers), ILGCN (rainbow culture international) and Bears International and others saluted the victims of fascism and neo-facism at a November 9th ceremony in the Swedish capital marking Kristallnacht -- the Ínternational Day against Fascism -- with presentations, discussions, poetry, art and photography.

Swedish Tupilak member, Tomas Åberg read his moving poem entitled "Kristalnacht" and other poems, and artist Bo Bergstrand read the poem of famous Swedish lesbian poet, Karin Boje, "Nattjar" -- about a darkly feathered bird searching in the night for the blue dawn's light -- a poem read in the Auschwitz museum during the historic, first-ever LGBT official visit to the Nazi death camp in Poland.

The ILGCN Information Secretariat's Bill Schiller read a statement honoring the Amsterdam-based human right group, "United," for inspiring November 9 events all over the world, stating that the anniversary not only signaled the smashing of Jewish shop windows in Germany in 1938 but also launching the mass deportation of Jews, Roma, dissidents, LGBT people and others to Nazi concentration camps all over Europe.

The statment also paid tribute to Irishman Roger Casement, hung by the British exactly 100 years ago after his "Black Diaries" of his same-sex contacts were spread by a homophobic press destroying his appeal for clemency, Vadim Kozin -- homosexual Russian singer arrested by the KGB in 1945 and sent to Siberia, gay Belarus culture worker Misha murded by a homophobic hooligan in Minsk as well as Faroes activist Rasmus Rasmussen and Hungarian gay activist, Milan Rozsa-- both driven to despair into taking their own lives.



November 9 anti-fascist exhibition (photo by Joakim of Sweden) 
November 9 participants, Stockholm (photo by Joakihm of Sweden)

Discussion of Evaluation of the Nordic Rainbow Month 

Some discussion took focused on the planned evaluation sessions this December 10-13 of the 1st Nordic Rainbow History & Art Month -October 2016 which took place in the northern Swedish city of Umeå, Stockholm and the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius.  

The Stockholm session included presentations about Nazi and neo Nazi persecution of LGBT people presented by Colin de la Motte-Sherman of Berlin, the ILGCN History Secretariat.   Plans were also discussed about next year's Nordic History Month with hopes of including more Nordic cities.

More information:  bill@tupilak.org     www.tupilak.org    www.ilgcn.tupilak.org 


Sunday, October 30, 2016

Last phase in Vilnius October 29-31, 2016 

1st RAINBOW HISTORY MONTH OCTOBER STOCKHOLM PHASE OVER

Stockholm -- The ILGCN's (rainbow culture international) and Bears International's  1st Nordic Rainbow History & Art Month stage in the Swedish capital has been completed with seminars, performances, poetry, film screening and art and photo exhibitions.   This followed the Month's first 2 days in the northern Swedish city of Umeå October 1,2 and is to be followed in turn by the last 3 days in the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius October 29-31.

Special guest speakers were Vilmos Hanti, Budapest-based president of FIR --the international anti-facist organization David Veres -- chairman of the European Rainbow Humanists., Ulf Andersson, editor of Sweden's Amnesty PressColin de la Motte-Sherman -- secretary general of the ILGCN History Secretariat-Berlin and Andrus K. co-secretary general of the ILGCN Eastern European Secretariat-Minsk.

Brazilian ILGCN cultural ambassador Anders Ödvall made a moving tribute to the life and songs of Brazilian gay singer, Renato Russo, who died of AIDS exactly 20 years ago.  Amanda Walkabout of Sweden and Apila Miettinen of Finland presented their Nordic-supported campaign "Lilies of the Streets" against prostitution and trafficking of both young men and women, and Swedish journalist Ivar Andersen and photographer Christofer Hjalmarsson provided a powerful description of the violence-filled realities facing gays in Afghanistan.

The Stockholm stage also focused on history and rainbow culture of  Iran, Kurdistan, Kyrgystan, Kazakhistan, Hungary, Poland  Sweden, Lithuania, Finland, Latvia, Estonia, the U.K., Iceland, Russia, Belarus and Ireland as well as on the media, elderly, refugees, trans, bisexuals, HIV/AIDS, sports and Bears both in the Nordic region and beyond.

The Stockolm stage of the history month was supported by the Nordic Association - Sweden, Tupilak (Nordic rainbow culture workers) and Nordic Rainbow Humanists,  and included the 2nd stage of this year's ILGCN international conference following stage 1 in Palanga, Lithuania last June..
                                               
ILGCN, Tupilak awards handed out, announced

ILGCN's "Clio's Silver Cup" history awards were handed out in person to pioneer film maker Marie Falksten of "Eva and Maria" fame, and LGBT book shop "Medusa" creator,  Karin Lindequist -- both of Sweden.  ILGCN's new award for international film making "Wings" -- named after the exactly 100-year-old film by homosexual Swedish film maker, Maurice Stiller  -- went to Maria Binder from Germany, and the ILGCN"Sappho in Paradise" literature award went to Greenlandic author Niviaq Korneliussen for her "Homo sapienne."  ILGCN's "Arco Imago" went jointly to Denmark's Birthe Havmöller for her art/photo archive,"Feminine Moments" and the Danish/Estonian-run "Nordic & Baltic Queer Art NetworkLatvia's openly gay Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics has received the ILGCN Rainbow Warrior 2016. 

Bears International announced its first "Bear Art 2016" awards going jointly to art photographer, Luke Darko of Paris and London-based artists/curators Mike Wyeld and Charlie Hunter.

 "We're proud finally  to join other cities running LGBT History Months such as Budapest, Edinburgh, London and some American cities," says Bill Schiller, secretary general of the ILGCN Information Secretariat - Stockholm and Tupilak's international secretary." "We're looking forward to the month's final three days in Vilnius and hope that next year´s Nordic History & Art Month will expand to include additional Nordic cities."

"Because of the 0-budget status of our Stockholm event, we are thankful for the free-of-charge venues provided by the Nordic Association, the local of the PositHIVa gruppen, the Secret Garden and Side Track pubs and Salon Lugo," Schiller concludes. 


Last phase in Vilnius October 29-31, 2016 

1st RAINBOW HISTORY MONTH OCTOBER STOCKHOLM PHASE OVER

Stockholm -- The ILGCN's (rainbow culture international) and Bears International's  1st Nordic Rainbow History & Art Month stage in the Swedish capital has been completed with seminars, performances, poetry, film screening and art and photo exhibitions.   This followed the Month's first 2 days in the northern Swedish city of Umeå October 1,2 and is to be followed in turn by the last 3 days in the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius October 29-31.

Special guest speakers were Vilmos Hanti, Budapest-based president of FIR --the international anti-facist organization David Veres -- chairman of the European Rainbow Humanists., Ulf Andersson, editor of Sweden's Amnesty PressColin de la Motte-Sherman -- secretary general of the ILGCN History Secretariat-Berlin and Andrus K. co-secretary general of the ILGCN Eastern European Secretariat-Minsk.

Brazilian ILGCN cultural ambassador Anders Ödvall made a moving tribute to the life and songs of Brazilian gay singer, Renato Russo, who died of AIDS exactly 20 years ago.  Amanda Walkabout of Sweden and Apila Miettinen of Finland presented their Nordic-supported campaign "Lilies of the Streets" against prostitution and trafficking of both young men and women, and Swedish journalist Ivar Andersen and photographer Christofer Hjalmarsson provided a powerful description of the violence-filled realities facing gays in Afghanistan.

The Stockholm stage also focused on history and rainbow culture of  Iran, Kurdistan, Kyrgystan, Kazakhistan, Hungary, Poland  Sweden, Lithuania, Finland, Latvia, Estonia, the U.K., Iceland, Russia, Belarus and Ireland as well as on the media, elderly, refugees, trans, bisexuals, HIV/AIDS, sports and Bears both in the Nordic region and beyond.

The Stockolm stage of the history month was supported by the Nordic Association - Sweden, Tupilak (Nordic rainbow culture workers) and Nordic Rainbow Humanists,  and included the 2nd stage of this year's ILGCN international conference following stage 1 in Palanga, Lithuania last June..
                                               
ILGCN, Tupilak awards handed out, announced

ILGCN's "Clio's Silver Cup" history awards were handed out in person to pioneer film maker Marie Falksten of "Eva and Maria" fame, and LGBT book shop "Medusa" creator,  Karin Lindequist -- both of Sweden.  ILGCN's new award for international film making "Wings" -- named after the exactly 100-year-old film by homosexual Swedish film maker, Maurice Stiller  -- went to Maria Binder from Germany, and the ILGCN"Sappho in Paradise" literature award went to Greenlandic author Niviaq Korneliussen for her "Homo sapienne."  ILGCN's "Arco Imago" went jointly to Denmark's Birthe Havmöller for her art/photo archive,"Feminine Moments" and the Danish/Estonian-run "Nordic & Baltic Queer Art NetworkLatvia's openly gay Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics has received the ILGCN Rainbow Warrior 2016. 

Bears International announced its first "Bear Art 2016" awards going jointly to art photographer, Luke Darko of Paris and London-based artists/curators Mike Wyeld and Charlie Hunter.

 "We're proud finally  to join other cities running LGBT History Months such as Budapest, Edinburgh, London and some American cities," says Bill Schiller, secretary general of the ILGCN Information Secretariat - Stockholm and Tupilak's international secretary." "We're looking forward to the month's final three days in Vilnius and hope that next year´s Nordic History & Art Month will expand to include additional Nordic cities."

"Because of the 0-budget status of our Stockholm event, we are thankful for the free-of-charge venues provided by the Nordic Association, the local of the PositHIVa gruppen, the Secret Garden and Side Track pubs and Salon Lugo," Schiller concludes. 


Monday, October 10, 2016

1st Nordic Rainbow History & Arts Month
October, 2016

Umeå/Stockholm -- The 1st Nordic Rainbow History & Arts Month -- October, 2016 -- has been launched in the northern Swedish city of Umeå October 1and 2, in the last two days of their annual Pride there  -- with seminars, discussions, films, art and photography.

"This was a great feeling for Umeå Pride to have launched this historical month," says Umeå Pride project leader Mio of Queerförvaltningen, the main Pride organizer. "Making LGBT questions more visible is more important than ever with the right-wing winds blowing everywhere around us!"

"The participants of this segment of this pioneering Nordic month have made history," Bill Schiller of Tupilak (Nordic rainbow culture workers) and the ILGCN (rainbow culture international)  told a cheering crowd from the Pride Park stage after the Pride parade marched through the city streets.  He jokingly added:  "We may be a bit slow sometimes in the Nordic zone -- perhaps because of the cold, northerly climate --  but we have finally caught up with LGBT-history month organizing colleagues in Budapest, Edinburgh, London and other southern cities."   

"Instead of limiting the event only to the capital city, the Nordic rainbow month follows the Umeå events by continuing in Stockholm and will end the month with the last three days in the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius  -- since we regard our Baltic neighbors as solid members of the Nordic family," Schiller adds. "This month is a long-overdue focus on the history and art of the vast Nordic region -- stretching from the coast of North America in the West and to the borders of Russia and Belarus in the East."
 
One aim is to use rainbow culture and the history as powerful weapons in the battle against the invisibility and discrimination of those with HIV/AIDS, those with different abilities, trans, the youth, elderly, and refugees from such nations as KurdistanIranKazakhstan,  KyrgyzstanBelarusRussiaUganda.

Revitalizing Nordic LGBT Co-operation..?

The Stockholm stage will also include the 1st Tupilak  Art Fair, the birth of the 1st Nordic Rainbow Network (reviving the long-ago deceased Nordic Homo Council but this time also including Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania),  stage 2 of the ILGCN World Rainbow Culture Conference 2016 (between stage 1 in Palanga, Lithuania last July and  stage 1 of  2017 in Budapest, Hungary), a Stockholm meeting of the European Rainbow Humanists, a Nordic session of Bears International and a Nordic fund-supported travelling exhibition on the devastating consequences of prostitution"Lilies of the Streets,and a photo exhibit from the international Association of Anti-Fascists.

"As a 0-budget event, we are very dependent on the generosity of rent-free locales in Stockholm offered by Nordic Association - Stockholm PositHIVagruppenSidetrack pub, Secret Garden  pub and the Folklore Centrum and such NGO organizations as the Central Asia GroupCivil Rights Defenders, as well as representatives from Swedish Amnesty Press, the Rainbow Library -- Umeå, the Canadian Embassy and the British Council," concludes Schiller.  

"In Vilnius, we are very pleased to have co-operation with colleagues in the national Lithuanian LGBT organization LGL and cultural workers in Vilnius for October 29-31, the closing days of this Nordic rainbow history month, " says Schiller.  "One of our aims in Vilnius is to include colleagues from neighboring Belarus -- eager for international contacts and support in their struggle against fierce homophobia in this last dictatorship in Eastern Europe." 

  




__________________________________________________________

 More information:  www.ilgcn.tupilak.org    www.tupilak.org   queerforvaltningen@gmail.com     bill@tupilak.org

Monday, September 5, 2016


1st ILGCN/Bears International
Nordic Rainbow History Arts Month
(Umeå October 1-2, Stockholm, Vilnius October 29-31, 2016)

Stockolm/Umeå/Vilnius -- The first Nordic Rainbow History & Arts Month will take place in these three Nordic cities in October, 2016 -- with seminars, discussions, films, art, photography, poetry and performances -- inspired by similar months in Budapest, Edinburgh, London and other cities.

"We plan a long-overdue to focus on the history and art of the vast Nordic region -- stretching from the coast of North America in the West and the borders of Russia and Belaus in the East," says Bill Schiller of the main organizers ILGCN (rainbow culture international) Information Secretariat-Stockholm and Bears International -- with the support of the Nordic Association (Förening Norden)Tupilak (Nordic rainbow culture workers)Nordic Rainbow Humanists and other organizations.

Another aim is to focus rainbow culture and the history of the battle against the invisibility and discrimation of those with HIV/AIDS, those with different abilities, trans, the youth, elderly, and refugees from Kurdistan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Russia, Uganda and elsewhere.  

 Revitalizing Nordic LGBT Co-operation..?

The event will also include Tupilak's 1st Art Fair, the birth of the 1st Nordic Rainbow Network(reviving the long-ago deceased Nordic Homo Council but this time also including Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania),  stage 2 of the ILGCN World Rainbow Culture Conference 2016 (between stage 1 in Palanga, Lithuania last July and  stage 1-2017 in Budapest, Hungary), a Stockholm meeting of the European Rainbow Humanists, a Nordic session of Bears International and a Nordic-supported travelling exhibition on the consequences of prostitution"Lilies of the Streets."

"As a 0-budget event, we are very dependent on the generosity of rent-free locales in Stockholm offered by PositHIVagruppenNordic AssociationSidetrack pub, Secret Garden  pub and other organizations.  We are also proud to work together with Umeå Pride and with colleagues in Vilnius," adds Schiller, " and the Central Asia Group with Östgruppen for Democracy and Human Rightsworking with Belarus, Russia and Ukraine." 

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Press Statement

Stockholm, August 2016

We are seriously troubled and dismayed over angry reactions, in Germany to our award to David Berger (Catholic Theologian); reactions which, however, seem to be part of the current atmosphere in much of Europe.

We strongly condemn all intolerance and discrimination from outside and from within the LGBT communities.

The ILGCN, (International Lesbian and Gay Cutural Network) was, as an idea, founded in Paris in 1992 when we suggested to ILGA (International Lesbian & Gay Association) that they should use culture in the fight for equality and justice for sexual minorities. They refused to do so. We said we will do what we can ourselves as a non-budget network.

Perhaps the silly rumour – totally without foundation – about ILGA making the award is based on a misunderstanding or mistranslation of this reference to ILGA.

Since then we have actively supported Queer groups in “Central & Eastern Europe” and occasionally outside Europe with small cultural conferences, talks, exhibitions with the intention of raising the self-confidence – pride – of members of the embattled but growing LGBT communities there by spreading knowledge of what LGBT people have contributed to world cultural heritage.

As can be imagined the conditions for some of the conferences were far from ideal. People afraid to be seen in such a context (nearly everwhere), authorities cancelling meeting places at the last minute (Belarus) or owners of clubs, galleries being threatened with a loss of tenancy (Lithuania) or semi-secret meetings in a cellar.

ILGCN decided to accept a recommendation in 2012 to give our annual “Orfeo Iris” diploma (for research and writing about oppression and discrimination of LGBT people) to Germany’s David Berger for his book “The Holy Glow” describing persecution of LGBT people in the Catholic Church.

Recommendations for ILGCN award diplomas (no monetary compensation is included) come from ILGCN secretariats, our cultural ambassadors, co-ordinators and friends.

That it can sometimes take years before the diploma is actually handed over is not unusual for us. As a 0-budget organisation with no travel funds, it can take some time for an ILGCN representative and the award winner to be at the same place at the same time. (We have a policy of NOT sending diplomas in the snail mail.)

Bill Schiller,
Secretary General, ILGCN Information Secretariat-Stockholm

Colin de la Motte-Sherman,
ILGCN History Secretariat-Berlin

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

ILGCN WORLD CULTURE CONFERENCE IN LITHUANIA 

  Palanga -- Presentations, discussions on the importance of LGBT culture, films and planning future strategies were part of theILGCN (rainbow culture international) World Rainbow Culture Conference (stage 1)  June 10-12, 2016 in this Lithuanian Baltic coastal town.

   "We had vauable exchanges and discussions on focusing especially on the tough battles for LGBT rights and cultural identity in Eastern Europe, says Andrus K. of Minsk, co-secretary general of the ILGCN Eastern European Secretariat,shared with Budapest.  "It's also important that journalists do not forget about their social responsibility for correct, non-discriminatory coverage of LGBT issues."

   Conference participants applauded the vieo message contribution from Ulrike Lunacek, open lesbian Austrian Green Party European parliamentarian, vice chair of the European Parliament and co-chair of the parliament's LGBT group, describing the progress made by the EU on LGBT issues and the serious challenges ahead for full equality.  

   "Canada is especialy eager to support the LGBT strugge for rainbow rights and culture in this part of the world," says Robert Milkovich, Canadian ILGCN co-ordinator from Toronto.  "Canada has had its share of discriminatory policies against various minorities.  But an evolution has taken place and it's important to understand how that evolution was able to happen."

                                                              Condemnation aimed at USA, Mexico, Bangalesh, Belarus

    The conference strongly condemned the recent murder of 49 at a gay disco in Orlando, Florida, the killing of 7 at a gay club in Mexico, the murder of two gay journalists in Bangladesh by machete-wielding religious fanatics and such psychological, verbal violence illustrated by  Belarussian Christian Democrat leader, Pavel Seviarynets, publically demanding the resignation of organizing committee member Marharyta Taraikevich simply because she openly defended LGBT rights.  

    "We're proud that the conference took place in Lithuania," says Arvydas Vogulis, ILGCN co-ordinator for Lithuania. "All international rainbow events here are an important support for our struggle against Lithuania's ban on information about homosexuality."  

   Also discussed were the important role of LGBT Bears on the local, national and international rainbow barricades to help shatter the homophobic concepts of what gays areally are in all their diversity.

      "The 2nd stage of the ILGCN world rainbow conference this year will take place October 10-14 as part of the ILGCN/International Bears organized  1st Nordic Rainbow History & Arts Month in Umeå, Stockholm and Vilnius," concludes Bill Schiller, secretary general of theILGCN Information Secretariat in Stockholm The Bears International session will take place in Stockholm on October 14.  The stages of the 2015 conference took place in Stockholm and Budapest.

More information:  bill@tupilak.org