Becoming Horse Girl movie series: Desert Hearts
5:00–5:15 PM Chazen Auditorium

My mother is a horse. An exhibition by Cat Birk artist Cat Birk will introduce Desert Hearts and discuss the film’s connection to their exhibtion.

5:15–7:00 PM Chazen Auditorium

Desert Hearts Film Screening
Desert Hearts is a film that shows the propulsion of queer desire that pushes us to become something that we know ourselves to be. Seeing queer desire, Vivian, the protagonist, is empowered – albeit slowly and somewhat hesitantly – to experience it for herself. The film captures the sapphic, denim-clad, rancher chic aesthetic that is a part of the horse girl DNA.

Tickets to attend this film screening are free, but donations to OutReach LGBTQ+ Community Center​ are encouraged! They are committed to equity and quality of life for all LGBTQ+ people through community building, health and human services, and economic, social, and racial justice advocacy. Donate here!

1985 | Drama | 91 min
Donna Deitch’s swooning and sensual first film, Desert Hearts, was groundbreaking upon its 1986 release: a love story about two women, produced and directed by a woman. In the 1959-set film, an adaptation of a beloved novel by Jane Rule, straitlaced East Coast professor Vivian Bell (Helen Shaver) arrives in Reno to file for divorce, but winds up catching the eye of someone new, the younger free spirit Cay (Patricia Charbonneau), touching off a slow seduction that unfolds against the breathtaking desert landscape. With smoldering chemistry between its two leads, an evocative jukebox soundtrack, and vivid cinematography by Robert Elswit, Desert Hearts beautifully exudes a sense of tender yearning and emotional candor.