Channel 4’s Random Acts has partnered with Tate to present six films in response to their new exhibition, “Queer British Art 1861-1967“. These captivating short films provide glimpses into LGBTQ lives through intimate portraits of six individuals. The films use differing styles of storytelling, with each queer filmmaker bringing their own creative approach.

The first in the series of films is directed by Joe Stephenson and features Scott Chambers and Ian McKellen. Scott Chambers gives an emotional performance evoking the feelings of a young Ian McKellen, as the acclaimed actor narrates his account of growing up in a time when there was no possibility of being out as a young gay man.  McKellen explains

“one of the reasons I proselytize, talk about being gay is because I don’t want today’s children not to enjoy their sexuality and be aware of it”.

Featuring works from 1861–1967 relating to lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer (LGBTQ) identities, Tate Britain’s latest exhibition ‘Queer British Art 1861–1967′ marks the 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalization of male homosexuality in the UK. The show explores how artists expressed themselves in a time when established assumptions about gender and sexuality were being questioned and transformed. Watch the first installment below:

“Queer British Art 1861-1967” is on at Tate Britain until 1st October.