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Akosua Adoma owusu
Reluctantly Queer
Experimental doc., Essay Film | super8, ProRes | black and white | 8'0'' | Ghana | 2016
This epistolary short film invites us into the unsettling life of a young Ghanaian man struggling to reconcile his love for his mother with his love for same-sex desire amid the increased tensions incited by same-sex politics in Ghana. Focused on a letter that is ultimately filled with hesitation and uncertainty, Reluctantly Queer both disrobes and questions what it means to be queer for this man in this time and space.
Akosua Adoma Owusu (born January 1, 1984) is a Ghanaian-American avant-garde filmmaker and producer whose films have screened worldwide in prestigious film festivals, museums, galleries, universities and microcinemas since 2005. Her work addresses the collision of identities, where the African immigrant located in the United States has a "triple consciousness.” Owusu interprets Du Bois’ notion of double consciousness and creates a third identity or consciousness, representing the diverse consciousness of women and African immigrants interacting in African, white American, and black American culture. Named by Indiewire as one of the 6 Avant-Garde Female Filmmakers Who Redefined Cinema, and one of The Huffington Post‘s Black Artists: 30 Contemporary Art Makers Under 40 You Should Know, Akosua Adoma Owusu is a MacDowell Colony Fellow and a Guggenheim Fellow. Founded in 2007, her company, Obibini Pictures, LLC has produced award-winning films including Reluctantly Queer and Kwaku Ananse, which received the 2013 African Movie Academy Award for Best Short Film. Reluctantly Queer was nominated for the Golden Bear and Teddy Award at the Berlinale, Berlin International Film Festival in 2016. In 2010, Owusu was a featured artist at the 56th Robert Flaherty Film Seminar. Artforum listed Me Broni Ba as one of 2010’s top ten films. Her work is included in the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Fowler Museum, Yale University Film Study Center, and Indiana University Bloomington, home of the Black Film Center/Archive. She’s received support from Creative Capital, Tribeca All Access, IFP, Focus Features Africa First, the Art Matters Foundation, the Camargo Foundation and the Berlinale World Cinema Fund. Owusu holds MFA degrees in Film & Video and Fine Art from California Institute of the Arts and received her BA in Media Studies and Studio Art with distinction from the University of Virginia, where she studied under the mentorship of prolific avant-garde filmmaker, Kevin Jerome Everson.