Graham Kolbeins (they/he) is a Canadian queer filmmaker, writer, and designer living in Joshua Tree, California. They are the director of the feature documentary Queer Japan, a kaleidoscopic portrait of sexuality and gender identity in contemporary Japan. Their short films include The House of Gay Art and PAISA, with co-director Dorian Wood. Kolbeins’ documentary web series, Rad Queers, profiled subjects including visual artist Edie Fake and Latinx leather organization Payasos L.A. In 2016, The Japan-U.S. Friendship Council named Kolbeins a recipient of their Creative Artists Exchange Fellowship.
Along with Chip Kidd and Anne Ishii, Kolbeins is the co-editor of three books on Japanese gay art: The Passion of Gengoroh Tagame (Vol. 1 and 2) and Fantagraphics’ Eisner-nominated anthology, Massive: Gay Erotic Manga and the Men Who Make It. The team also collaborated on Koyama Press’ English-language edition of What Is Obscenity?, a graphic memoir by Rokudenashiko chronicling her arrest on obscenity charges for making 3D printed art using a digital scan of her own vulva.
As a videographer, Kolbeins has collaborated with a number of acclaimed performance and multimedia artists including Ron Athey, Cassils, Fanaa, and Rafa Esparza; musicians San Cha, Alice Bag, and Dorian Wood; and playwright Virginia Grise. They also work as a freelance editor and videographer creating digital content for World of Wonder, the producers of RuPaul’s Drag Race.