I grew up in Indonesia and Senegal. My father is Afghan and Russian and my mother is Filipino/Chinese with Black indigenous roots.As a biracial brown girl, I didn’t quite know how to define myself. As an adult, that lingering sense of otherness persisted. I became fascinated with the margins.
My graduate research looked at Asian and African diasporic literature, and I draw from that heavily in my art. Much of my work focuses on the margins--the margins of respectability, of race, of culture, and gender. I celebrate these cultural margins in my work.
About the murals of Racial Justice during Black Lives Matter Protests.
CHICKEN CHAPEL OF LOVE
These are examples of recent work commissioned for the BigCar Chicken Chapel of love. These 4x3 ft panels of sycamore wood I millled myself from the East side of Indianapolishang in the interior space. The hand carved doors were a joint project with a fellow artist and are made of sepele wood from West Africa. The images draw on sacred traditions from my multicultural backrground, such as the image of Mami Wata, an important West African deity.More info here.
Get in touch
1154 N Pershing Ave. Indianapolis IN 46222
The natural world features heavily in my work. As an immigrant artist, I grapple with questions of home, and belonging, and what it means to use materials from a land that is not my own.
I use hyper local materials like wood scavenged from the White River or urban trees that I mill myself. I find prophetic revelation and inspiration in the continued work of the confluence of ecology and artistry.
The examplesinclude: a digital art piece contemplating the Emmrichsville damn in Haughville, oil and wood burning on local persimmon wood musing about a future with mega fauna, and sharpie pen on canvas panel in celebration of Frida Kahlo.
Social practice art values and prioritizes engagement with the subjects and audience of the pieces. These are examples of some recent public art projects of mine that include the Murals for Racial Justice project funded by the Indianapolis Arts Council, a community mural in the Haughville Library (co-painted with Israel Solomon), and a panel that became part of a large collaborative luchador installation at a pocket park on the Near West for Arte Mexicano en Indiana.
I have taught in various settings since 2014 when I started as a graduate teaching fellow at Seton Hall University, and then later as a professor there and at IUPUI, and UINDY. After leaving higher ed, I taught in an afterschool program at the Mooresville arts partnership where many of my students were on the Autism spectrum. There I learned a lot about diversifying my teaching styles and lesson plans for accessibility and modes of learning. In my current role I plan the entire year of adult programming for a 300 person congregation. This includes a diverse range of programs that might include open makerspace dates, community garden dates, community murals, or humanist discussion groups—which means I have to be flexible and relevant to wide ranges of ages and abilities.
Much of my art is public practice art, and my involvement with the arts outside the classroom is usually from a DEI lens so I feel as if I am always teaching in some way. During the process of painting the mural in the Haughville library I engaged with conversations with patrons all day,and was able to have so many meaningful teaching (and learning) moments. Much of my art uses wood as the primary medium. I love working with wood and teaching about the way that the material can be an avenue of learning about history, ecology, internationalism, and intersectional thought. I draw on my multiracial heritage and international experience heavily. My teaching is rooted in a practice of listening. When people engage in making art, they usually have a story to tell—even if they aren’t yet sure how to tell it. I feel privileged when I help facilitate students telling their stories to each other or to the wider public through the creation of art.
Work Experience and Education
Teaching Artist for Arts for Learning- Summer 2021-Present
-create lesson plans and programs in tandem with IPS educators to support arts programs in schools
Coordinator of Programs and Communications- August 2019 to Present
All Souls Unitarian Church
-Plan, promote, and execute programing and educational opportunities that foster Diversity and Inclusion, engage congregants in the wider conversation of Social Justice issues (with a focus on Racial and Environmental issues) in the local Indianapolis Community.
Visual Art Instructor (Mooresville Arts Partnership)- Fall 2018-2021
-Plan and teach 3 age-grouped classes a week in the areas of multicultural art and intro to drawing and painting
M.A. in English
Seton Hall University, S. Orange NJ
Address: 1154 N. Pershing Ave. Indianapolis IN 46222
iNSTRUCTOR (English) University of Indianapolis –Fall 2018
-Teaching a variety of Writing and Composition courses with heavy research component including library skills and database familiarity.