Unbuttoned // A festival of gender, art and you, presented by Metro Arts and Brisbane Festival, will prise open the gap between man and woman to gaze at the space between.

A sticky four-day program of performance, visual art, film and party (with some extra stuff to boot!), Unbuttoned opens up the curly questions.

What does it mean to be in these bodies?

How do we gender, and how do we un-gender?

What hurts, what thrills, and what’s possible?

Unbuttoned will be an inclusive and exciting event taking place between 15-18 September; a risky, playful and sexy space where every type of body is welcome.

The festival includes the following events.



Brisbane Festival’s annual photographic exhibition displays photography responding to one of the great themes of our time: gender. High school students and the general public were invited to submit original works that best captured their thoughts on this crucial topic. Curated by Henri van Noordenburg, this captivating exhibition will unwrap some of what gender means to us.
FREE EVENT // continues until Saturday 24 September, 2016

STILL I RISE // Hannah Brontë

This new video work shows a world where the government is comprised of strong women from diverse ethnicities, demographics and ages. The Prime Minister is an Indigenous female; proud and fluent in her traditional language, leader of the new world. Through politically charged, fierce feminist rap the new government shall address the people.
FREE EVENT // continues until Saturday 30 September, 2016

TITLE OPTIONAL // FAKE estate and Tyza Stewart

Through play and experimentation, these works will represent non-binary gender identities and experiences, in order to challenge dominant (mis)representations of gender in popular culture.
FREE EVENT // continues until Saturday 30 September, 2016


Anastasia Booth considers the history of fetishism and its relationship to subversive female dialogues through connotations with myth and esoteric discourse. She explores the sensuality of materials, the potential for dysfunctioning objects to speak to the problematics of female desire and how humour and the performance of absurd sexual gestures can broaden the depictions of female sexuality.

FREE EVENT // continues until Saturday 24 September, 2016

OPEN STUDIO // Courtney Coombs & Tyza Stewart

Two of Metro Arts’ Artists in Residence open their studios to share recent bodies of work; reflecting on queer, feminist and transgender Australian experiences.

Live art

THE TALK // Mish Grigor

Mish Grigor’s The Talk is a terribly undomesticated evening. It’s one account of what happens when you start talking about sex with your family, what ‘the talk’ is, and what it shouldn’t be.
TICKETED EVENT // $15* per ticket – bookings required

WANK BANK MASTERCLASS // Rural Ranga (Adam Seymour)

A rollicking workshop; an Australian happy ending masseur from New York City brings you an informatiove and playful master class of original techniques to perfect the art of handling your partner’s member (or even your own).
TICKETED EVENT // $15* per ticket – bookings required


Grotesque and gorgeous surreal showgirl and world-famous performer Betty Grumble arrives in Brisbane with her one woman show GRUMBLE: Sex Clown Saves The World. Experience the queen of the obscene in an odyssey of deep disco dissent. Witness her rage, her desire and her internal organs in a shamanic striptease that is ‘part theatre, part comedy, part dance, part sordid burlesque and a whole lot of social commentary’ (GreatScott.media). Are you Betty to Grumble? Winner: Underbelly Award 2016. Commendation for Best Cabaret, Adelaide Fringe 2016.
Warning: Grumble: Sex Clown saves the World contains full nudity and is restricted to 18+
TICKETED EVENT // $15* per ticket – bookings required

WHAT IF I CURL MY VEIL // Cigdem Aydemir

A durational performance that explores the power of dynamics of contemporary culture and has a particular interest in representations of Islam and the image of the veiled woman, through a specially-conceived beauty routine that is at once absurd, glamorous and provocative.
TICKETED EVENT // part of Fempre$$ ($5 per ticket – tickets only available at the door)

Talks/Social Events


Take the shackles off your feet so you can dance because Oops!…we did it again, and FEMIOKE is back!
Are you going to tell us what you want, what you really, really want? Is it R-E-S-P-E-C-T and no scrubs? The event is proposed as a safe space to celebrate by both singing favourite feminist anthems and taking back misogynist songs.
TICKETED EVENT // $5 per ticket – tickets only available at the door

FEMPRE$$ // Hannah Brontë

Fempre$$ places women on the mic, the decks and the dance floor in a one-off hip hop event that is as fierce as it is deep.
TICKETED EVENT // $5 per ticket – tickets only available at the door

THE CIDER COUCH // Tristan Meecham

Tristan leads the conversation around all things gender, sex and cider.

ARTIST TALK // Jamie Lewis

Jamie Lewis, a Singaporean-Australian artist engaged in social practice, reflects on residencies in regional Queensland with the Queensland Country Women’s Associations.


REFLECTIONS IN A GOLDEN EYE // directed by John Huston

Bizarre tale of sex, betrayal, and perversion at a military post.
TICKETED EVENT // $13* per ticket – bookings required

52 TUESDAYS WITH ARTIST TALK // directed by Sophie Hyde

Sixteen-year-old Billie’s reluctant path to independence is accelerated when her mother reveals plans for gender transition and their time together becomes limited to Tuesday afternoons. Filmed over the course of a year, once a week, every week (only on Tuesdays) these unique filmmaking rules bring a rare authenticity to this emotionally charged story of desire, responsibility and transformation.
Before the film will be an artist talk with M’ck McKeague.
TICKETED EVENT // $13* per ticket – bookings required

SPEAR WITH ARTIST TALK // directed by Stephen Page

Using gesture and dance, with minimal dialogue, SPEAR follows a young Aboriginal man named Djali (Hunter Page-Lochard) from the outback to the streets of Sydney on his quest to understand what it means to be a man with ancient traditions in a modern world.
TICKETED EVENT // $13* per ticket – bookings required

ALL ABOUT EVE // directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz

An ingenue insinuates herself in to the company of an established but aging stage actress and her circle of theatre friends.
TICKETED EVENT // $13* per ticket – bookings required

HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH // directed by John Cameron Mitchell

After a botched sex-change operation, East German glam rocker Hansel (John Cameron Mitchell) becomes Hedwig and travels across the United States with a stage show, following her ex-boyfriend (and former band mate) and telling her life story. Hedwig’s offbeat show slays audiences — but in diners, not clubs.
TICKETED EVENT // $13* per ticket – bookings required

*$2.20 booking fee applies to each ticket

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