Kimberly Alidio’s recent books are why letter ellipses (selva oscura), : once teeth bones coral : (Belladonna*), and a cell of falls (Portable Press at Yo-Yo Labs). Recent poems are in The Tiny and Baest, and forthcoming in Pleiades, and Sinister Wisdom. Her prose on poetics and history appears in Harriet, Woodland Pattern, Poetry Northwest, and the essay collection, Filipino Studies: Palimpsests of Nation and Diaspora. Her website is kimberlyalidio.com.
Hari Alluri (he/him/siya) is the author of The Flayed City (Kaya). A winner of the 2020 Leonard A. Slade, Jr. Poetry Fellowship for Poets of Color, and an editor at Locked Horn Press, he has been nominated for the Pushcart and Best of the Net. Hari has received grants from the BC Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts and fellowships from Las Dos Brujas, Port Townsend, and VONA/Voices writers workshops. His work appears in the Watch Your Head (Coach House) and Pandemic Solidarity (Pluto) anthologies, as well as recently in Anomaly, Ovenbird, Prism International, Solstice, Tinderbox, and elsewhere.
LaKela Brown received a BFA in 2005 from the College for Creative Studies in Detroit. Her sculptural relief works evoke ancient art forms such as hieroglyphic wall carvings or cuneiform relief tablets, with imagery that references 1990s hip-hop culture. Door-knocker hoop earrings are posed as celebratory symbols of female empowerment and maturity; embedded in other works are rope chain necklaces, gold-capped teeth, and chicken heads. Brown’s pieces are presented as artifacts from another era that have been discovered and placed on display for an examination that is as much anthropological as aesthetic. Plaster relief slabs are installed alongside their bas-relief counterparts, and in some instances three-dimensional cast sculptures are placed alongside their molds. By hearkening back to ancient Greco-Roman methods of mark making, Brown presents a meditation on how objects are historicized, represented, and abstracted in a museological context.
Homegrown poet and outsider to both academic and spoken word literary orbits, blkcowrie ❀ is exploring Northern New Jersey and New York City’s vibrant creative communities. This re*belle poet in bloom seeks the fertile to foment beauty, cultivate collective empathy, and conjure anew who we/i&i are. blkcowrie ❀ is quirky, Black, queer, womanist, femme, disabled, poor and of size; as well as an intuitive butterfly mermaid scribe still wet from the chrysalis. From soaring cosmic contemplations to engaging the frontlines of revolutionary community struggles to navigating permeability, love, pain, and healing of the self, blkcowrie ❀ and her pen move to the music of water and flowers as she wanders and wonders at the soul’s journey. Published twice in ESSENCE magazine’s back pages as a young teen and later becoming one of the featured poets for Poets & Writers’ 10th Annual Cross Cultural Reading, blkcowrie ❀ is honored to have attended 3 consecutive periods of the Cave Canem Foundation’s highly acclaimed workshop series for emerging Black writers from 2018 to 2019. blkcowrie ❀ is a holistic tarot reader, a former career community organizer with nearly 30 years professional grassroots experience in multi-issue struggles, and a lifelong radical activist. As the eldest daughter of a Black Jamaican immigrant and a southern born Black U.S. Army career soldier, both raised in poverty, she learned through witnessing their lives that the world is wide and multifaceted; to survive it, one must become intrepid.
Dannielle Bowman received a BFA from The Cooper Union and an MFA from the Yale School of Art. From 2019-2020, she was a contributor to the New York Times Magazine’s 619 Project and in 2020, she was awarded the Aperture Portfolio Prize. Bowman has been an artist in residence at Baxter St at the Camera Club of New York; the Center for Photography at Woodstock; and PICTURE BERLIN. She was recently a recipient of the 2020 PH Museum Women Photographers Grant and in 2021 she will participate in the Light Work Artist-In-Residence program. Her work has been published in Aperture Magazine and in the recent Radius Books publication THREE, among other publications. Bowman has exhibited in the US and internationally. She lives and works in New York.
Bryan Byrdlong is a Black writer from Chicago, Illinois. In high school, he was part of Chicago’s Louder than a Bomb poetry slam competition. He graduated from Vanderbilt University where he received an undergraduate English/Creative Writing degree and was the co-recipient of the Merrill Moore Award for Poetry upon graduation. He has been published in the Nashville Review, Heavy Feather Review, and Pleiades Magazine. Most recently, he received the Gregory Djanikian Scholarship from The Adroit Journal. He is a graduate of the Helen Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan and a current Zell Creative Writing Fellow.
Ina Cariño is a Filipinx American poet with an MFA in creative writing from North Carolina State University. Their poetry appears in Waxwing, New England Review, and Tupelo Quarterly, among other journals. Ina is a Kundiman fellow and a Pushcart Prize nominee. Through their work, they explore the transformation of brown bodies through space + time.
Jade Cho is a writer and educator from Oakland, CA. She is the author of In the Tongue of Ghosts (First Word Press, 2016) and her poems have appeared in BOAAT, Tinderbox, The Offing, and elsewhere. She holds a BA in Ethnic Studies from UC Berkeley and is an MFA candidate in poetry at Arizona State University.
Chantal Feitosa is a Brazilian American artist and educator from Queens, New York. She works between image-making, language, and pedagogy to explore themes of belonging, idealism, and care. The processes of collage and archiving are at the heart of her practice when developing digital media, semi-fictional narratives, or socially engaged work. Her films have screened at the Harlem International Film Festival (NY), Vidlings & Tapeheads (MI), the Every Woman Biennial (NY), and the Anti-Racist Classroom’s Represent Film Festival (CA). Feitosa received her BFA in Film/Animation/Video from the Rhode Island School of Design with a concentration in Literary Arts & Studies. She has been an artist in residence at the Anderson Ranch Arts Center, Residency Unlimited, and Smack Mellon.
Jenna Gribbon (b. 1978, Knoxville, TN) lives and works in Brooklyn. She graduated with an MFA from Hunter College in 2019. Her solo exhibitions include Fredericks & Freiser, NY; Tennis Elbow at The Journal Gallery, NY; GNYP Gallery, Berlin; and Howard’s Gallery, Athens, GA. Her work has been exhibited widely in group exhibitions in the US, Germany, UK, South Korea, Norway, Finland and Switzerland. In March, she will open a two-person exhibition with the filmmaker Agnes Varda at Sim Smith Gallery, London. Her work has appeared on the covers of Purple and Harper’s Bazaar Latin America.
Karen Gu‘s writing has appeared in McSweeney’s Quarterly, Paper Darts and The Margins. She has been awarded fellowships from Kundiman, the Jack Jones Literary Arts Retreat, and the Loft Literary Center. She lives in Las Vegas.
Joselia Rebekah Hughes is a writer and allopractice artist based in New York. She’s keen on making limited run zines—An Unraveling (2011), HbSC (2012), Heartbeats by No Air (2018), VitaMin See (2019)—and has performed and exhibited work at The Strand, Bronx Art Space, The Poetry Project, Gibney Dance Studio, Participant Inc, and National Sawdust. Her writing has appeared in Ocean State Review and The Poetry Project’s Poems and Texts.
Maryam Kazeem is a writer based in Lagos. Her work has appeared in publications including Literary Hub, Catapult, Joyland, and Kweli. She recently completed an MFA in Creative Writing at CalArts, where she teaches as a Post-MFA Fellow. She is currently at work on her first novel.
Mihee Kim (she/they) is a Queer, Korean-American artist, poet, and Managing Director of Kearny Street Workshop, a longstanding Asian Pacific American arts nonprofit based in San Francisco. She earned a B.A. from UC Berkeley and is in the MFA program for Writing at CCA. She creates on Chochenyo Ohlone land aka Oakland, California.
t. liem‘s writing has appeared in Plenitude, Room Magazine, The Boston Review, Peach Mag and elsewhere. Her debut collection Obits. (Coach House 2018) was shortlisted for a Lambda Literary Award and won the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award as well as the A.M. Klein Prize. She lives in Tiotia:ke/Montreal—unceded Kanien’kehá:ka territories.
Ananda Lima‘s work has appeared or is upcoming in The American Poetry Review, Poets.org, Kenyon Review Online, Gulf Coast, The Common, Poet Lore, Kweli, The Acentos Review, Colorado Review, and elsewhere. Her poetry collection Mother/land (forthcoming, Black Lawrence Press, 2021) won the 2020 Hudson Prize. She is also the author of the chapbooks Translation (Paper Nautilus, 2019, winner of the Vella Prize), Amblyopia (Bull City Press – INCH series, 2020) and Tropicália (Newfound, 2021, winner of the Newfound Prose Prize). She has an MA in Linguistics from UCLA and an MFA in Creative Writing in Fiction from Rutgers University, Newark.
antmen pimentel mendoza (he + she) is a writer based in Richmond, CA. Her poetry is published in Cosmonauts Avenue, Underblong, and Lantern Review. In 2020, she was selected as an IWL fellow by Kearny Street Workshop. His favorite donut is a maple old-fashioned. antmen is online as @antmenismagic.
Kelly Taylor Mitchell (she/her, b. 1994) is an artist and educator who lives and works in Atlanta, GA where she is currently an Artist-in-Residence with the Studio Artist Program at The Atlanta Contemporary and a Working Artist Project Fellow with The Museum of Contemporary Art Georgia. Kelly is an Assistant Professor of Art and Visual Culture and the Art Program Director at Spelman College. Kelly’s multidisciplinary practice centers oral history and ancestral memory woven into the fabric of the Africana Diaspora, in order to present speculative histories, specifically related to concepts of community autonomy, swamp marronage, and inherited identity. Utilizing printmaking, papermaking, sculpture, and textiles her work manifests as immersive installations, performative objects, artists books, and as a venue for the sensorial –specifically smell- to connect to, convey, and reimagine rituals and rites of autonomous kin, collectives, and individuals of the Africana Diaspora. Kelly earned an MFA in Printmaking from the Rhode Island School of Design and a BFA in Printmaking from The School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University. She has participated in residencies at The Minnesota Center for Book Arts, Anderson Ranch Arts Center, and is an upcoming Women’s Studio Workshop Artist-in-Residence.
Yesenia Montilla is an Afro-Latina poet & a daughter of immigrants. She received her MFA from Drew University in Poetry & Poetry in translation. She is a CantoMundo graduate fellow and a 2020 NYFA fellow. Her first collection The Pink Box was published by Willow Books & was longlisted for a PEN award. Her second collection Muse Found in a Colonized Body is forthcoming from Four Way Books, 2022. She lives in Harlem, NY.
Timothy Moore is a Korean American writer and instructor in Chicago. He is a Kundiman and Luminarts Fellow and a recipient of a Hinge Arts Residency. His work has appeared in McSweeney’s, Midnight Breakfast, and Ghost Ocean Magazine. He has an MFA in Creative Writing from Roosevelt University. | Twitter: @timmoore19
Chanell Stone (b. 1992, Los Angeles) is an artist living and working in Oakland, California. Stone earned her BFA in photography from the California College of the Arts in 2019 and has exhibited in galleries in San Francisco and New York. Her solo exhibition Natura Negra appeared at the Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco in 2019-20, she was included in the 2019 Aperture Summer Open, and has been the recipient of several photographic awards. Through self-portraiture, collage, and poetry, Stone focuses on challenging monolithic views of Blackness by expanding on narratives subject to Black erasure. This avidity has led her to explore the Black body’s intersectional states of being and connection to the American landscape.
DeShara Suggs-Joe is a queer Black poet and the Creative Director of Workshops at Winter Tangerine. She co-founded Daughter’s Tongue and is a former member of the Youth Speaks Collective. She received her MFA in Writing from California College of the Arts. She is a 2016 Callaloo Fellow, 2017 Poetry Incubator Fellow, and a 2018/2019 Pink Door Fellow. She’s been published in Voicemail Poems, Tinderbox Journal, The Texas Review, and others. She has also been featured on Button Poetry’s YouTube platform and has performed at the likes of Spotify, Yahoo, and Pinterest. But she considers home inside a classroom teaching creative writing to youth or listening to her Feels playlist.
Suiyi Tang is either en route to the postcolony or crying in the metropole, but always online at legitimizedinprint.com. She is the author of American Symphony: Other White Lies (CCM Press, 2019).
Mimi Tempestt (she/they) is a multidisciplinary artist, poet, and daughter of California. She has a MA in Literature from Mills College, and is currently a doctoral student in the Creative/Critical PhD in Literature at UC Santa Cruz. Her debut collection of poems, the monumental misrememberings, is published with Co-Conspirator Press. She was chosen for Lambda Literary Writers Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ Voices for poetry in 2021, and is currently a creative fellow at The Ruby in San Francisco. Her works can be found in Foglifter, Chaparral Press, Interim Poetics, and Honey Literary.
Chiffon Thomas (b. 1991) was born in Chicago, IL and holds an MFA from Yale University and a BFA from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago. Thomas has since developed a multifaceted practice incorporating embroidery, collage, drawing, and sculpture to explore the self as split, fractured, and transforming. Identifying as a non-binary queer person of color, Thomas contends with the crafted body in their work, examining wider issues of gender, race and sexuality. Thomas has completed prominent residencies with the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Skowhegan, ME and the Fountainhead Residency, Miami, FL. Their work is included in the permanent collections of the Pérez Art Museum, Miami, FL and the Currier Museum of Art, Manchester, NH.
Aisha West is an actress and writer. After graduating from the Experimental Theatre at Tisch School of the Arts at New York University, Aisha wrote, directed, and performed plays with Synaesthetic Theatre for ten years. Her short stories have appeared in the online journals “HASH” and “Blood Pudding.” She is currently writing her first novel about a teenage runaway who tries to hide during the age of self-disclosure. She lives in Brooklyn with three tuxedo cats.
Nicole Zhao is a writer from Jackson Heights, Queens and based in Brooklyn. She graduated from Rice University with a BA in English, where she launched the only sociopolitical pan-Asian American advocacy organization at Rice. She can be found online at www.nicolezhao.carrd.co and on Twitter at @nicolegzhao.