On Friday, August 9, a human rights gathering called ‘Human Rights Friday‘ took place in honour of the Antwerp Pride 2019.
The event took the form of a debate on activism in the LGBTI community. The main question of the session was how participants can apply and integrate the ideas of the Stonewall Riots 50 years ago in their daily work.
Antwerp Pride Chairman, Bart Abeel invited the following participants to the discussion:
The debate was led by Dalilla Hermans, an opinion maker and writer.
During the debate, LGBTQ issues in the workplace were addressed by David Pollard from Workplace Pride who shared his thoughts and experiences on the topic of workplace pride inclusion and best practices. Arnout Van Krimpen presented the ‘Rainbow Dress‘, a creative project and fashionable way to raise awareness on the state of the criminalisation of homosexuality around the world. This project was also exhibited at the Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp MUKHA during the pride festivities.
Fleur Pierets, author, activist and artist, gave a keynote speech on how to become an activist in 3 steps:
1. Inform about what is happening in the LGBTI world,
2. Communicate with LGBTI persons about their life and struggles,
3. Become a Giant
Overall, this was an engaged discussion preceded by a moving keynote speech, by Fleur Pierets where she linked her activism to her personal story. Fleur Pierets and the Dutch Julian P. Boom worked as a female artist duo under the name JF. Pierets and made among others the magazine Et Alors?. In October 2017 they kicked off “22” in New York. An art performance where they wanted to get married in all countries that allow same-sex marriage (in the beginning 22 countries, and now 25). Is was a “world tour of love”. The world press was on the phone, all kinds of famous people sent their congratulations. Until the death of Julian intervened on January 22, 2018.
To conclude the meeting there was a mixed media and interactive performance by queer artist Neal Leemput.
More information and event program description here.