From the Board Chair

Michele Thornton,

ImageOut Board Chair

Hello and Happy New Year! I am thrilled to have the opportunity to lead ImageOut as Board Chair during this exciting time. My primary intention over the next few months is to learn more about what our community of volunteers, members and patrons is looking for from ImageOut and find new, innovative and sustainable ways to deliver on that moving forward.  

I want to send gratitude and respect to our outgoing Board Chair, Stephen Weisenreder. During Steve’s tenure ImageOut faced unprecedented challenges including significant industry shifts, a pandemic, and the painful loss of our longtime programmer Michael Gamilla. Steve’s calm, leadership and determined loyalty left ImageOut with a strong foundation for us to continue on with strength and passion for LGBTQ+ film, arts and culture in the greater Rochester region.

Our longtime board member and former Board Chair, Paul Allen has also completed his board service. Paul’s insight, unique perspective and spirited love for ImageOut has benefited the organization for over two decades. We are honored to have had such amazing commitment and contributions from Paul over time. I am happy to report that Paul will remain a volunteer for the organization by continuing to serve as our Development Committee Chair.  

We are so happy to introduce you to three new (& returning) board members. Rick Porlier, who has served on the board in the past, has been part of the programming committee over time, is coming back and has accepted the role of Board Vice-Chair. Amber Brooms, long-time marketing and outreach volunteer, is stepping into the role of Secretary. Finally, Adrian Safar, recent special events volunteer, is our newest board director. For more information on each of them, and our entire 2024 ImageOut Board, take a look at their photos and bios on our website. All of us are strongly committed to our mission to present LGBTQ+ arts and cultural experiences in 2024 by showcasing films, other creative works and artists to promote awareness, foster dialogue and build community.  Please join us this year as we plan for our exciting future of ImageOut together.

Call for Art!

We are thrilled to announce a new juried exhibition in partnership with Rochester Contemporary Art Center, "Queering Democracy: Art, Identity, and Politics in 2024."

This call is open nationally for artists of all backgrounds, identities, and those exploring all narratives of genderqueerness. We welcome 2D, 3D, and electronic media that:

- Showcases experiences, emotions, and thoughts on the evolving struggle for LGBTQIA+ rights and representation

- Channels queer history, beauty, politics, fierceness, and fabulousness

- Are documentary in nature, recording and reflecting on our history and current moment

Queering Democracy is a project of the ImageOut Art Committee in partnership with Rochester Contemporary Art Center (RoCo), and will be juried by a diverse panel of arts professionals who identify as LGBTQIA+. This exhibition expands on past collaborations between RoCo and ImageOut Art and will take place in fall 2024, during election season and along with the ImageOut Film Festival at The Little Theatre and The Dryden Theatre.

Read the full call for art here.


Get Involved in 2024!

ImageOut has exciting plans for 2024 and we'd love for you to be part of it. As the year comes to a close, and you're thinking about your goals for next year - if volunteering with a fun, meaningful and impactful organization is on the list, ImageOut is a great option! If you're strategic-minded, and eager to help guide our decision-making, please consider applying to be on the Board of Directors.  We also have several committees looking for new voices and perspectives including Finance, Development, Ticketing, Marketing, Programming, ImageOut Art, ImageOut Write, Technology and Community Outreach. To learn more about our committees, click here. For more information and to get involved, please email our Board Chair Michele Thornton or fill out our website contact form.

Become a 2024 Member!

Memberships are the lifeblood of a small, local non-profit. We rely heavily upon the support of our members to sustain our community programming and events throughout the year. Please help us to continue our mission of celebrating and supporting LGBTQ+ arts and culture in Rochester and Monroe County, NY by purchasing a new or renewal 2024 annual membership today! You can make a lump sum gift today, set up recurring donations to pay over time, or make a pledge today and pay later. We’d love to have you join our ImageOut family!

To read more about 2024 ImageOut Membership levels and benefits or to complete an enrollment, click here.

Questions? Email [email protected].


Film Screening: TOVE

ImageOut is pleased to be the community partner for The Dryden Theatre’s screening of TOVE tonight (Wednesday, January 10), 7:30pm. Presented in Finnish, Swedish, and French with English Subtitles.

About the Film: “The legacy of Tove Jansson lives on in the characters of the Moomins, a fantastical family of hippo-like creatures that populated her children’s stories starting in 1945. Her life, however, was less fanciful, having lived through World War II. This biography picks up after the war when Tove (Alma Pöysti) is reveling in her new creative and social freedom. She has an open relationship with a married politician, but her ideals are put to the test when she meets and falls in love with theater director Vivica Bandler, who refuses to commit to Tove. Struggling with her feelings and her growing career, Tove must find the love within herself to make her life complete.”

For more information and tickets, click here.

RWCC "From a Theatre Near You" Concert

You can’t have a great film without great music. ImageOut is proud to be the community partner for the Rochester Women's Community Chorus’ "From A Theater Near You" concert on Saturday, January 13 in the Harley School auditorium (1981 Clover St.), 7:00pm doors and 7:30pm show. The RWCC will sing of inspiration, courage, and the joy of life’s journey inspired by the music of film. ASL interpreted and wheelchair accessible.

For more information and tickets, click here.

ImageOut: The Rochester Lesbian & Gay Film & Video Festival, Inc. is a tax exempt, not-for-profit 501(c)(3) corporation. Our mission is to promote awareness, foster dialogue, and build community by showcasing LGBTQ+ arts and culture through films and other creative works in the greater Rochester, New York area. All gifts are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.

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