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Filmfest München


Zwei Männer liegen in einer innigen Umarmung auf grünen Kohlblättern

For the fourth time Museum Brandhorst and FILMFEST MÜNCHEN are cooperating this year. Artist A.L. Steiner presents URANIANS—a curated film and video program that celebrates, critiques and represents queer and female-read sexuality on screen.

About the program

A.L. Steiner’s curated film and video program URANIANS is a unique journey through bodies, times and spaces with several premieres, homages and iconic contributions. It spans the futurist cyberpunk narratives and aesthetics of Shu Lea Cheang and Bruce LaBruce, with THE STROLL Kristen Lovell’s and Zackary Drucker’s distinctive archival look at the queer and trans-identified past of New York’s meat-packing district, and with MAMACRUZ, Patricia Ortega’s unwaivering exploration of sexual awakening in defiance of patriarchy. In ORLANDO, MA BIOGRAPHIE POLITIQUE, philosopher Paul B. Preciado has 25 trans and non-binary persons take on the title role of Virginia Woolf’s queer novel “Orlando” to tell their personal stories. At Museum Brandhorst, A.L. Steiner will present COMMUNITY ACTION CENTER, a 69-minute sociosexual video made in 2010 from a collaboration between A.L. Steiner and A.K. Burns. The screening will be followed by a panel discussion between A.L. Steiner, Shu Lea Cheang, Bruce LaBruce and Jürgen Brüning.


The program will constitute but a small selection of filmic works representing queer presence—a resistance that runs counter to the demands of heteropatriarchal invisibility in representation on screen.


The films of URANIANS will be shown in the presence of A. L. Steiner and other artists and filmmakers during FILMFEST MÜNCHEN (June 23 to July 1, 2023) in various FILMFEST MÜNCHEN cinemas in the city.

Portrait von Künstlerin A.L. Steiner, die sich mit einer Hand an die Brille fasst

A.L. Steiner

A.L. Steiner utilizes constructions of photography, video, installation, collage, collaboration, performance, writing and curatorial work as seductive tropes channeled through the sensibility of a skeptical queer ecofeminist androgyne. Steiner is co-curator of “Ridykeulous,” co-founder of “Working Artists and the Greater Economy” (“W.A.G.E.”) and collaborates with numerous writers, performers, designers, activists and artists.


New York’s legendary Meatpacking District has many stories to tell. THE STROLL is about the transgender women of color who have left their mark on this neighborhood over the years. Where rich hipsters now brunch, an underground community once formed. This is where the many trans sex workers who were marginalized for so long worked, lived, loved, and died.

USA 2023 | Directors: Kristen Lovell, Zackary Drucker | 85 min | Original version

Frau in einem kurzen Rock steht vor einer roten Mauer, an ihrem Bein lehnt ein Schild auf dem handschriftlich geschrieben steht: Power to the People


In “Orlando” (1928), Virginia Woolf tells the story of a young man who becomes a woman. Nearly 100 years after the publication of this novel, which is now considered a pivotal work of queer literature, philosopher and trans activist Paul B. Preciado has created a love letter to Woolf, proclaiming to her: “Your character has come to life! The world is now full of Orlandos!” Preciado has 25 trans and non-binary people slip into the role of Orlando and tell their personal stories.

France 2023 | Director: Paul B. Preciado | 98 min | Original version with English subtitles



APHRODITE URANIA is a program of short films curated by A.L. Steiner, featuring a selection of works made at the turn of the century through 2022. Emerging within two decades of social activism, transitional languages, porno superstructures and artist-centric subcultures, the works chosen represent independently-produced works challenging archetypal and hegemonic representations of queer sexuality. An erotic, sensual, analytical, and curious group experience in lesbian processing, the explicit sexual desires presented on screen are guaranteed to titillate, pique, humor, entertain and challenge the audience.

Featuring works by Kajsa Dahlberg, Shine Louise Houston, Lenn Keller, Nyala Moon, Marit Östberg, Peaches with A.L. Steiner + Lex Vaughn, Jennifer Reeves + MM Serra, Jan Soldat.



Just one click and Cruz—wife, mother of an aspiring dancer, grandmother of a precocious granddaughter, and devout Catholic—lands on a porn website. She's overcome with shame, but the images also awaken her hidden desires. When she joins a sex therapy group for women, she gradually makes progress in her search for sensuality and self-love.

Spain 2023 | Director: Patricia Ortega | Cast: Kiti Mánver, María José Mariscal, Pepe Quero | 90 min | Original version with English subtitles



A slick but clumsy and accident-prone hustler named Monti (Tony Ward) is pursued by a good-natured but sullen foreigner, Jürgen Anger (Bruce LaBruce), who has come to L.A. to write his memoirs. In HUSTLER WHITE, there are no women, no drag queens, no drugs, and no AIDS; it is a lived fantasy.

Germany, USA 1996 | Directors: Bruce LaBruce, Rick Castro | Cast: Tony Ward, Bruce LaBruce, Ivar Johnson, Ron Athey, Vaginal Davies | 79 min | Original version

Portrait der Künstlerin Shu Lea Cheang in schwarz/weiß


The films of Taiwanese American artist Shu Lea Cheang alternate between queer cinema, science fiction, pornography, and a networked scenario of installation and performance. Museum Brandhorst and FILMFEST MÜNCHEN are dedicating a tribute to the genre-crossing artist and showing five of Cheang's cinematic works. Her latest feature film UKI will celebrate its world premiere in Munich.

Vier roboterhafte Wesen stehen vor roter Wand


Shu Lea Cheang’s latest feature film, UKI, is celebrating its world premiere at the Filmfest. This sci-fi viral alt-reality movie is a sequel to I.K.U. (2000). Reiko is robbed of their body data and dumped on Etrashville, a giant landfill for electronic waste. There they resurrect as “UKI the virus” in order to sabotage a biosystem developed by the GENOM Corporation to manipulate sexual pleasure through pills. Defective humanoids, transmutants, techno-data bodies and an infected city join forces with the UKI virus. UKI is a suspenseful digital collage of game software-generated animation combined with live-action film and visual effects.

Germany, USA 2023 | Director: Shu Lea Cheang | Cast: Tyra Wigg, Bernard J. Butler, Joey, Asia-James Ryan Ryyves Thomas, Alan Chen | 80 min | Original version with German subtitles



Shu Lea Cheang’s queer cypherpunk science-fiction film is set in 2060, after the government has announced the eradication of AIDS. Mutated HIV have, however, led to the creation of a new species, the ZERO GEN: genetically evolved gender-fluid humans whose ejaculation is the hypernarcotic of the 21st century. This drug spreads through contact with skin and produces an addictive high. A new war on drugs begins, and the ZERO GEN are declared illegal. They are caught between underground drug lords, glitched super-agents, a scheming corporation, and a corrupt government.

Germany 2017 | Director: Shu Lea Cheang | Cast: Candy Flip, Bishop Black, Kristina Marlen, William E. Morris, Alexander Geist | 80 min| Original version with German subtitles



The year is 2030, and Reiko, a sex worker and replicant, is roaming the futuristic megacities of Japan in search of willing prey for sex marathons. As a coder for the GENOM Corporation, she collects data on orgasms. This data is used to develop a mobile phone chip that is designed to give people virtual orgasms “on the go.” When Reiko catches the mysterious “Tokyo Rose” virus in a nightclub, her mission appears to have failed, but a system reboot and masturbation in an effort to find herself replenish her chip. I.K.U. lives up to cyberpunk science-fiction porn by featuring a cast from the Tokyo nightclub and adult film scene, Y2K-era computer graphics, lots of sex, and indulgent consumerism.

Japan 2000 | Director: Shu Lea Cheang | Cast: Akira, Aja, Miho Ariga | 90 min | Original version with English subtitles



SEX BOWL uses quick cuts like a music video. The imagery is fast-paced, suggestive, and erotically charged, associating sports with sex. Sexually explicit content alternates with fingers penetrating bowling balls and lips sucking toes. In the narrative style and aesthetic of 1990s videos, Cheang’s short film celebrates the promiscuity and fetishes of various queer encounters.

USA 1994 | Screenplay & Directors: Jane Castle & Shu Lea Cheang | 7 min | Original version with German subtitles



The unifying element in SEX FISH is water: it drips, flows, and splashes, associating a sexualized natural environment with explicit sexual acts. Fleshy fish swim through the video; bodies surrender to lust. As an associative montage of oral sex, cruising in public restrooms, and wet places, this short film also attests to the people whom Shu Lea Cheang knew and collaborated with during her time in New York. “SEX FISH was made with friends and lovers, intimate sexing bodies flowing in a sexing fishy vibe,” says the artist.

USA 1993 | Director: Shu Lea Cheang in collaboration with Jane Castle & Ela Troyano | 6 min | Original version