Daniel F. Cardone / 2015 / United States / 80′

When the first effective HIV treatments were introduced in the mid-1990s a generation of HIV+ gay men were thrown a lifeline. What happened to these men who thought they were terminally ill only to discover they would now survive? Desert Migration introduces us to such a group of men in their fifties and sixties who have made Palms Springs in the California desert their home, where they have found a community of kindred spirits. Having anticipated certain death these long-time survivors are now unexpectedly living to old age which brings with it a new set of issues. Daniel F. Cardone's film beautifully captures their life-affirming, bittersweet stories amid the surreal desert landscapes, making us confront our own mortality.


A Dialogue with:

Amanda Millis, Artist. Writer.
Lecturer in Psychoanalysis in Culture and Society at Goldsmiths, University of London.
Doc Duhon, Retired.

Directly following the UK premiere of, Desert Migration, Amanda Millis and Doc Duhon will be discussing the film and long-term HIV/AIDS survival. Amanda and Doc’s formation and definition of family both deviates and exists beyond the bounds of societal rules. This discussion will be framed in a feminist psychoanalytic theory, Matrixial Subjectivity, created by artist and psychoanalyst, Bracha L. Ettinger. In this framework, they will consider what it is to be linked with individuals in simultaneous presence and absence and define and exemplify the dance of: acknowledgement and moving through trauma and getting stuck in the material-societal identity of trauma. They will address matters such as the lack of an HIV/AIDS memorial in London and the immediate need for the NHS to provide PrEP. Following the dialogue, there will be an audience Q&A as well as information on accessible activist actions to provide PrEP on the NHS now.

Presented in partnership with Fringe! Queer Film & Arts Fest

Desert Migration

Friday, June 24, 2016 - 20:30
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Marc Smolowitz

Production Company

Best Revenge Productions, HIV Story Project

Film Website