Because nothing is sweeter than submission…

Please click on the tab for your discipline(s) and follow the instructions. Thank you for submitting!



QAF 2016: Stonewall Was a Riot, June 21 – June 30

In 2016, QAF makes the move to June from our long-established dates around the August long weekend. On June 28, 1969, the patrons at the Stonewall Inn in New York City fought back against a police raid, sparking three days of riots that captured world attention. Widely credited as the beginning of the modern-day queer civil rights movement, those riots ignited the international phenomenon of Gay Pride Parades. By referencing Stonewall, QAF renews the connection between contemporary Pride celebrations and a history of struggle. Today, perhaps especially in Canada, with a decade behind us of same-sex marriage and legal protections against discrimination, complacency comes easy. As Sarah Schulman wrote in her meditation on art and AIDS The Gentrification of the Mind: Witness to a Lost Imagination: “Now after all this death and all this pain and all this unbearable truth about persecution, suffering and the indifference of the protected, Now, they’re going to pretend that naturally, naturally, things just happened to get better… We come around when it’s the right thing to do. We’re so nice. Everything just happens the way it should.”


From Oscar Wilde to General Idea, artists have been the vanguard of the queer civil rights struggle, with social and aesthetic innovation inextricably entwined. As renowned art historian and queer theorist Jonathan D. Katz explains: “Wildly diverging queer artists have shared credence in art’s ability to, if not produce social change, at least lubricate its prospects. And central to this generalized belief is the idea that queerness works a seduction away from naturalized, normative and thus invisible ideological creeds towards a position that is precisely other to, at a tangent from, social expectation. In deviating from social norms, queer art thus calls the viewer, of whatever sexualities, to an awareness of their own deviancy.”

Performance Submissions:

Proposals from all performing arts disciplines (dance, music, theatre, circus arts, and any hybrid, interdisciplinary forms) are accepted on a year-round basis, but the best time to submit for the upcoming festival is in August.

Due to the large number of submissions, only proposals under serious consideration will receive a reply.

Please email at with your submission:

  1. One page performance proposal describing the piece, including title, duration, artistic discipline, and technical requirements
  2. Short bios of 250-500 words of all participating artists, including website URLs
  3. Headshots or other promo images .jpg no larger than 200 kb -must have title and name of artist
  4. Phone number and email for contact person
  5. Audio or video sample of work – accepted formats DVD, CD, mp3 and youtube or vimeo links. Please check your media – if we cannot open your files, the submission will not be considered.

Pride in Art Community Visual Arts Shows

QAF has two community visual art shows this year! The Pride in Art Community Show in the Roundhouse Great Hall, and the Salon des Refusés. Art for these shows doesn’t need to fit the festival theme.


  1. The Roundhouse Community Arts and Recreation Centre (at Davie/Pacific), Vancouver, BC
  2. TBA, Vancouver, BC

When: June 21 – June 30, 2016.

Submission deadline: May 15 or until space is filled.

Roundhouse Great Hall specs:
    1. 25 hanging places: work must be no wider than 30″, and be able to hang from silver hooks at 7′ high
    2. All works must be professionally presented; wall-mounted pieces must be ready to hang
    3. Plinths: 24″ sq 4 ft high, or 16″ sq 3 feet high
    4. 2 glass shelving unit glass display cases, 16″ square
Submission Checklist:
  1. Completed the Online Submission Form below. Submissions are accepted via online registration only. Please fill out the information in the appropriate fields.
  2. Digital images of artwork(s) being submitted for consideration. Format: JPG (no larger than 200 kb per image). All image files must be clearly titled with artist name_work title_year of creation, or the submission will not be accepted. Please email files with the subject line “Community Artwork Submission” to
  3. Submission fee: $15-35 Pay what you can, by cheque, or Paypal. No one will be turned away for lack of funds. $35 is the usual submission fee for an exhibition of this kind, to help cover:
    • Pride in Art Society $2 membership fee
    • Hanging costs for the exhibition
    • Promotional expenses (posters, website, brochures, publicist)

Sliding Scale

You may also include if you wish:

  1. 75 word Artist Bio
  2. Artist Statement pertaining to the work submitted
  3. Please allow minimum 2 weeks for a response.

PLEASE NOTE: The policy of the Roundhouse is that in the Great Hall (unlike the Exhibition Centre), frontal nudity or sexually overt work is not permitted. The Great Hall is not a formal exhibition space that people consciously choose to enter, but a pass-through space that young children and parents use frequently in their other activities at the Roundhouse, hence the policy. Obviously, there is room for interpretation in the policy, and the Roundhouse Programmers exercise their discretion in the application of the rules. Sorry about that. It’s Roundhouse policy not QAF, ’cause, well, you know, we like genitals and sex.

The Salon des Refusés has no such restrictions.

Queer Arts Festival Curated Exhibition

Drama Queer: seducing social change – curated by Jonathan D. Katz

This exhibition explores the role of emotion in contemporary queer art as a form of political practice. As a mechanism to coalesce feelings and direct them with activist intent, emotion is increasingly central to much contemporary work. This exhibition places the queer use of emotion into a historical frame, arguing that the solicitation of an emotional response has been of central import at least since the 1960s, as underscored by critics from Frank O’Hara to Jill Johnston to Gene Swenson. While much of the art world foregrounded formal innovation, leaving the nakedly emotional unacknowledged, even unseen, queers have long championed the emotional in contradistinction to the formal. A means to challenge the dominant formal values so often elevated by critics, while undercutting anti-expressive postmodernist tenets, emotion had the added value of returning the field of art-making to the socio-political present. With the advent of AIDS, this emotional undercurrent grew in force and power, challenging the equanimity of dominant culture in the face of holocaust. Nakedly manipulative, this earlier queer art sought to move the viewer into action.

Drama Queer solicits a range of contemporary work towards understanding how feelings function in our political present, and the different facets of art and emotion — political emotion, erotic emotion etc. This exhibition will explore art that seeks to engender social change through making the viewer an accomplice, queering their perspective or seducing them into seeing the world from a dissident vantage point.

QAF is delighted to welcome Katz as visual arts curator for 2016. Widely recognized as a leading authority in our field, Katz’s work as curator, scholar, and activist has had a profound impact on the understanding of queer art and artists in both academia and the larger world. Katz is best known for co-curating Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture at the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery in 2010, the first openly queer exhibition at a major US museum.

Queer Arts Festival Curated Exhibition

Artists are invited by the curator(s) to make or submit work
If you would like to show us your work for consideration – simply send an email with the subject line “Curated Artwork Submission” to including:
  • your full contact details (including where you reside)
  • your artist bio
  • a link to your website
  • critical reviews of your work
  • how your work will speak to the year’s theme if applicable

Unfortunately we cannot respond to every email, so please don’t be surprised if we aren’t able get back to you, we are always pleased to know of interesting work and will keep your work on file for future consideration.

Deadline: January 1

Also consider participating in the Pride in Art Community Shows, accepting un-themed open submissions until May 19.