Marlon Riggs was born on this day in 1957. A political filmmaker, Riggs started exploring themes of race and sexuality in his films while attending Harvard University. As he was originally from Texas, a film festival in Dallas named for him will run it’s third annual event this year. The following text is from Firebrands: Portraits from the Americas: “Banned from numerous public-broadcasting stations, Riggs’ work sparked debates about funding and censorship in public television, and encouraged him to rally support for a more inclusive, diverse popular media. After contracting the HIV virus, Riggs became an outspoken AIDS activist, exploring his experiences in his film Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien (No, I Regret Nothing). He continued to work on his film Black Is…Black Ain’t, a personal journey and examination of a myriad of African-American identities, until his death in 1994.”
This illustration was made by Molly Fair.