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30 June 2020

Graceful Under Pressure

by Syd Briscoe


Vogue: “Brasilāndia” - 5 mins 45s

Being trans is dangerous, if not deadly, in most countries across the world, and the outlook for trans women of colour is particularly bleak. This affecting short film for Vogue focuses on the struggles and triumphs of the trans art community in one of Brazil's deadliest favelas: Brasilāndia.

What unfolds over the film's near-six-minute runtime is a portrait of a community which refuses to give in to fear and hide who they are. Powerful visuals celebrate their relentless creativity and determination not to buckle under circumstances, while the calm repetition of "alive/dead" hammers home just how much their survival depends on the violent whims of others.

As marginalised people who already struggle to access healthcare are further ravaged by Covid-19, this film offers a timely reminder of the work such communities undertake to help themselves. Without structures or often any outside support at all, it's encouraging to see the profound, thought-provoking art which can be born of dire adversity.


Film Production: COMPULSORY Ⓟ Ⓦ
Director: Florian Joahn Ⓦ
Cinematographer: Rodrigo Inada
Production Designer: Eduarda Del Cueto
Editor: Rodrigo Inada / Florian Joahn
Colourist: Alex Gregory @ The Mill Ⓟ Ⓦ
Location: Brasilāndia, Sao Paulo, Brazil

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