2019 REEF Residency Artists

  • Rosa Boshier (Critical Studies MFA 18) is a writer whose work spans multiple genres. Her work can be found in publications such as Entropy, The Acentos Review, The Rattling Wall, Necessary Fiction, and New Delta Review, and has been staged at The Getty Center's LA/LA Pacific Standard Time and The Mission Cultural Center for Latino Art in San Francisco. She earned her MFA in Creative Writing at The California Institute of the Arts, where she now teaches Latinx Studies. She has received generous support for her work from the Rainin Foundation, Zellerbach Foundation and Bill Graham Foundation.
  • Alyssa Manansala (Critical Studies MFA 18) is an essayist and poet, interested in experimental nonfiction that engages critical race theory, decolonial politics, and desire. She was a featured artist in the 2017 APAture Festival's Literary Art Showcase; a 2018 fellow of the Interdisciplinary Writers Workshop for Emerging Writers of Color, hosted by Kearny Street Workshop and the Asian Art Museum; and an editorial assistant for Sublevel Magazine's inaugural issue, "Contagion," edited by Janice Lee and Maggie Nelson. She teaches Asian American studies as a Teaching Fellow in the School of Critical Studies at CalArts, and she is the founder and co-curator of inter/subject, an art-thought workshop series. Her writing can be found in Tayo Literary Magazine, Hyphen Magazine, and Agape: A Journal of Literary Good Will.

    Boshier and Manansala will use the REEF residency to develop an aesthetic, intellectual, and political discipline they have coined Decolonial Ekphrasis—a framework for decolonizing how art is viewed and understanding the reverberating effects of colonial trauma in intellectual and creative work. They will hold workshops and readings during the residency, with the aim of honoring, archiving, and studying decolonial and POC writers and scholars. Informed by this research, they will engage in interdisciplinary writing and visual arts projects around Asian American and Latinx media representations, along with memory, translation, gender, mythology, and power. By combining both archive and practice of radical POC and decolonial thought, Decolonial Ekphrasis attempts to investigate colonial histories within ourselves as a means of healing, empowerment, and artmaking.
  • Cynthia Velasquez (Critical Studies MFA 18) is a queer woman of color of Chilean-Guatemalan descent. Born in Northeast Los Angeles, California, Velasquez’s work centers the ‘home’ as a formative space shaped by queerness and Latin-American diaspora. Her practice uses multi-media as a conceptual tool that aesthetically explores spaces of survival through memory; using space as the architectural space of her childhood home toward an imagined home. Her work builds on a non-linear historical formation through a womxn of color perspective potentially understanding diasporic experiences within the limits and/or expansiveness of Los Angeles as an immigrant community.

    Velasquez reorientates photographic images into new objects that document a diasporic journey of border travel, not only between nation-states, but across language, class, race, ability, gender and sexuality. Mediums include multimedia painting, ink, clay,  photography, and theory. She studied at CalArts in the Aesthetics & Politics Program, School of Critical Studies. Velasquez is currently a lecturer at CSUDH and a Teaching Artist for CalArts’ Community Arts Partnership and the Museum of Latin American Art (MoLAA). Velasquez has participated in several solo and group shows and film festivals in Southern California; Phoenix, Arizona; Albuquerque, New Mexico; Chicago, Illinois and San Antonio, Texas.
  • Jinal Sangoi (Art MFA 18) is an interdisciplinary artist who creates links between art, life and pedagogy. Through her performative interventions, she creates temporary spaces for healing memories of violence, exploitation and segregation, while also using art-teaching as a collaborative process to bring about alternative modes of activism and resistance. Deconstructing the female body as a subject of normative ethics, her work counters patriarchal hegemony in the postcolonial world. Sangoi moves between culturally hybrid spaces, exploring the intersectionality between social inequality, gender construction and destruction of nature or motherhood.

    Sangoi is a recipient of the Gender Bender Grant from Goethe Institut-Bangalore (2018), Tim Disney Prize for the Storytelling arts (2017) and Chiquita Landfill Found Art Scholarship (2017). She has developed and facilitated projects for children in schools and other organizations in India and US. She is a member of the core team of Centre for Arts and Social Practice (India) since 2013, and recently started her own organization Beej, which aims to promote arts education and integrated learning practice. Sangoi has exhibited in India, US, Austria, Romania, and Bangladesh. She lives and works in Los Angeles and Mumbai.
  • Hannah Kim Varamini (Art MFA 18) is an interdisciplinary artist based in Los Angeles. She was born in Washington, D.C. to first-generation Korean immigrants. She received her BFA from Cornell University and MFA from the art program at CalArts. Her work employs language and symbology to examine ideologies of nationalism, and personal histories of diaspora and cultural hybridity. She spent time in Namibia on a Fulbright fellowship in 2008, which propelled an ongoing interest in postcolonial discourse. She has presented work in various contexts including the Santa Cruz Museum of Art, the Phillips Collection, and the National Art Gallery of Namibia.
  • brd (Art MFA 18) is an artist interested in understanding rhetoric and logic, and how the perception of understanding determines use, exchange, and gift value. She considers fictive and propositional possibilities as well as instances where forms of communication combine, depart, or fail one another. She also investigates notions of empathy and the limits of how the subjective experience can be inhabited or embodied (by another or by displacement). Slippages, conflations, and circular reasoning commingle with persistent preoccupations around the burdens and desires threaded between care and love. She holds a dual BA and BS from DePaul University and MFA from CalArts.

    Together, brd and Varamini will embark on an exploration of an ethics of dedication and sharing, through co-facilitating a series of interconnected collaborations. Mobilizing emotional and immaterial labor, the artists will spend the next year extending invitation, nurturing relationships, and developing projects with undetermined outcomes. They envision an evolving, permeable, and inclusionary group of artists exploring the establishment of trust and the risk of vulnerability, both at the intimate and institutional level. The resulting conversations, events, and material objects will intertwine temporally-related forms, weaving personal process with shared endeavors.