The Thread Mag 'Translation' Edition

Page 1



2.0 1



Cover: searching in the dark by Anne Pfund

Artistic Director: Malcolm Durning Editor-In-Chief: Alayna Rickard

6. upon coming by Samantha Weisenthal

Public Relations & Social Media: Soma Okoye .

* 7. La Traduction by Jade Katia Croonenberghs and AlexanderJackson Maier

Digital Editor: Elizabeth Katz

8. Party Queen by Rye Ramirez

Treasurer & Secretary: Miranda Schumacher

10. Rye² by Austin Groeneveld

Artist Recruitment & Management: Rachel Keteyian

11. untitled by Jackie Colquitt 12. The Threshold by Burak Kaçi 18. Comfort and Ansible by Federico Mostert

SPECIAL THANKS Bailey Beaudoin-Scanlan Jessie Durning Sarah Durning 2 The Myriad


* 20. fibra by Amia Melian and Sami Sneider 22. The Oldest Profession by Kacy Christman

* Collaborative Partnerships

24. Love Regardless by Carson Scott

46. Translation Series: Bayan Abubakr

25. a study of the way I talk (excerpt) by Nazareth Hassan

48. Translation Series: Alex Bartner

30. Wandering Eye by Anthony Pellegrino

50. untitled by Rizelle Rosales

31. Cartography For An Impermanent Candlewax by Declan Zhang 32. THIS IS NOT YOUR PLAYGROUND by Kamilya Issaliyeva

* 54. Transatlantic by Derek Koffi-Ziter and Raj Miller 56: Thoughts to Canvas by Stacey Lamb (feat. Svatlana Dunaeva, asst. by Gabrielle Stevens, Lauren Walsh)

34. Impulse to Breathe. 58. Laxity by Sarah Rose (excerpt) by Sera Levy (shot by Damir Mitchell, feat. Claudia * 60. blue by Sojourner Brown and Vila Rosell) Julie Martin 36. Translation Interview Series * 62. Translating the spectrum through color + movement by Melissa Johnson and Sarah Kim 38. Translation Series: Eliah Eason 64. Forest Hills is Still Dark 40. Translation Series: Maya by Joey Solomon Hendricks 66. La Mexican by Stephanie 42. Translation Series: Kristine Barajas Haruna Lee 44. Translation Series: Danny Cole


D e a r r e a d e r s a n d c o l l a b o r at o r s , We are eternally grateful to you for supporting

The Thread Mag. The Thread Mag was founded in 2017 with a mission to provide artists with a platform to challenge and expand their artistic boundaries while collaborating with and learning from fellow creatives. Since the beginning, The Thread Mag has believed in the importance of collaboration. Unlike other publications, we pair artists of different mediums together to create work based on a theme that is chosen for each upcoming issue. These partnerships are the heart of The Thread Mag and with each issue our team is determined to further streamline the partnership process, making it even more impactful, enjoyable and satisfying for our artists in the future. We are always open to hearing your input as to how we can improve this collaborative experience. Our team of volunteers has thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of pulling together our second edition— excitingly our first print edition. For this issue, we chose the theme ‘translation’ to encourage our artists to show the world their personal perspective,


or, rather translate their views, through their work. In today’s society, it can often feel as though we lack honest, empathetic connections. We struggle to look past our differences to see how much we have in common. We build walls instead of bridges, both literally and figuratively. As you peruse this issue, in which you will discover how our artists translate who they are and what they care about, we hope you find at least one piece you connect with- one piece that expands and opens your perspective. As we continue to grow, our team is excited to see how The Thread Mag evolves and improves, something that would not be possible without your continued support. If you are interested in joining our team and helping us get to where we’d like to go, please visit our website at www. For now, we hope you enjoy our second issue, The Thread Mag: Translation.

With our deepest love and gratitude, Malcolm Durning & The Thread Mag Team


a Weise h t n nt a m ha a S l

UPON COMING A curtain billows in the afternoon wind and God died last year it was omitted by the press

and that the disembodied voice on the telephone would have to do for those kinds of people

This is where the missing children gather

Now the children blink from television screens

a body of youth waiting to be given the word

with powdered noses and black velvet between their teeth

some kid with braces boasts that neighbor gave him the last dime bag on the block

while the gradual fear and eagerness for their mother returns in radio static and trying to find the places we’d seen on the screen

All the and all the

of the children ran away when tide was drowned the wind was blowing so hard the dust of august ended up in classrooms of september

while ADD from LSD tucks into the eternal private conversation which occurs on the toilet in the midst of swiping right

and mother went to get milk and the adult down the street was babysitting big brother and God’s omitted obituary showed up in the cherubic faces in newspapers the day after another mass shooting

while kylie’s lip kits are placed on tomb stones next to yeezy’s and drones

To establish some communion of emotion

Now the missing children gather on a pilgrimage to innocence seeking to resurrect all the fallen pieces that the center could not hold

the children decided there’s never been a good republican folk singer


and the toothbrush the girl next to me in the bathroom uses to gag herself with while we misplace the future and start looking for it in bed







ez ir am E R


Be a valiant individual and eliminate any form of restriction or limitation to your identity. In the world I’ve created, binary does not exist and there are no rules. You can be a party queen if you want to be and nobody can stop you. 9


enevel o r G n i t s u A


what i meant to say was it’s not in how you left that ages me; it’s the fact that you did at all this doesn’t mean my ankle is snagged inside of before; i’m actually swimming up the current finally a toward motion as if water borne. i spend the days standing at the edge of the shore the fish the gulls the slithering clouds turning my questions about the future and fate and love yes especially love into epistles my children will tuck into their pockets like candy money or promises.

Jackie Colquitt





You get lost in the translation‌ Your own insecurities, fears or even the cultural codes of the dogmatic societies. As a gay man living in a country where I was taught not to accept my real self, I often got lost translating different layers of myself. In the end, I was fed up being on the threshold, I took a step and became shapeless. In the photo series, The Threshold I told the visual narrative of a person who is stuck between his real self and the ideal self.






ud, el solit si e o d e g o r d u n a o o b escritur tes en f se amor e e e m d e e o d T n e , l s l s? Quema nte, ? Ay! que hace y ignora mo estas o o c t r ? e s y luego i e p r s e te. de qui Que tris de “que ? l a t n e lo ori o viaje a ismo hij m n u i m r o r p a pagar e mand ? No atando d ficiente no puede r u t s a j y a i o i h t r s e u e S T ar, avos? edo ayud dos cent o d n a No te pu m Te en.” ojecto. co tambi i r a ese pr i n o sbres per altisima s somos po e l l a c s biles, Entre lo e automo d r)os s e r r o jas de t por car( s a m a nas y ca d i a u n q s s e o i n c e espa mete gente se s a r t n e mi oamerican o c n a . i a x r e cartu No soy m olasmedio de al. n e o d i homosexu met a r o e t o o r n “ ue no e ro santo ojada, q huahuens t n i o e h c e a d r o e n r i e o j lat d.” . Que n e una mu es verda , no mas o o n Como dic s e o s n e e olo al. Y d; e pone s homosexu s a m de verda a Porque s d y a o o, n s , o e y t Ni nol fals igen a l p e s t e n i e t a s e er o son hablo en as que n r b a l a p e en echandom leer n vez de e z e v a vio otr o o Octa l b a P e r s ue ros vemo t Que se m o s o n s . ientra patetica mpiece m e a i s s o e i o D p e mi o d “El rein a.” na pajin u o ui. a y a rmina aq e t una pant ti… con mi… ruction. a t n s i e m d r e l t e ctura d vivos. la estru cuerpos y ria s a r b a ue passa Q . con pal s o c i los r hacemos s e n o i c we. c es ele uerto? dad? Que pobr se han m s e r imortali b o a p r t s s eis mas o e l u n s odo o. Los s egara v l i l v n e i r quando t f b d nada Por Pobre po in perda s o g l s a lo que e n ganan i e f d r e o t P r a son p vivos. viven no tos casi r e e u u q m s , o s r rico s los ot r que tu cia. Si i n r e b s u n c o s c e d de para elo solo i c l a tuyo. s ista. llega s commun o . i s D a d n O si no: a u g i n segr so co no estan n Paradi e a y r i s v e i b v u n ner que Vas a te



Fe de





Amia Melian and Sami Sneider Visualize the fibers and nerves that translate messages throughout the body.






Overnight, my life and the lives of sex workers like myself were changed. I didn’t have time to make art because I was busy watching the sites I advertise on disappear overnight, I was watching people return to the streets, I watched people on Twitter, on Facebook either panic or not even know this was happening to us. Our biggest ad boards are gone, community boards are disappearing, our black lists being wiped. Twitters deleted, Google Drives deleted, whole personal websites gone, being banned from site after site. Panic attacks, drinking until I could fall asleep, crying and crying while reading TOS changes and taking every mention of who I am and what I do off every site I can think of lest I, too, lose my safe spaces on the web. The only thing that pulled me out of

it was gathering with my fellow whores and figuring out how to fight back. Compiling lists of information on how to protect ourselves online, how to protect ourselves in person, saving contacts offline just in case it all goes dark. I also learned quickly how to translate these bills and what these politicians were saying to us: “We know better than you dumb whores.” “We don’t care about you.” “You are nothing but a scourge on society.” But I also learned something else...this bill translated to us banding together. It means solidarity, it means you can’t kill us, it means we will always be here. We are the oldest profession after all.






I wrote this piece as an analysis of the history of how I came to speak the way I do. For years, I had felt like I lived in between translation, going from my oreo’d existence in my all black neighborhood to my ghettofied reformation at the private school I went to for 10 years in Georgia. Neither of those perceptions of me were true, but I began to live by them. I was floating, and I just wanted solid ground. I only recently decided to lay stake in my own linguistic legacy. This piece was a way to document that. A self help bible of sorts, one that no one will be able to dispute the way I speak, not even the most self-richeous of the black or the most devilish of the white.

Nazareth Hassan




Three of us eating lunch on a bench in the middle of the melting city sun. Sandwiches, san pellegrino, sunglasses, and cigarettes, the perfect spice for your Cuban Melt. Class in 20, one of us says. He’s a nervous dude. Normally his antsiness annoys me, but he’s presenting his semester’s work in class, so I give him a pass. He’s super pale and lacks self-awareness. Y’all wanna smoke later, I ask. Sure. mine, the third friend suggests. She’s glowing right now, looking like fresh caramel and dream dust. Second friend’s phone rings. His mom. He raises his voice, something unheard of in my house. I’ve gotten slapped down flights of stairs for that. Not that black kids need anymore violence enacted against them by






the people we look up to the most, but respect is best served cold. A ‘shit’ flies out of his mouth, we look at each other. A ‘fuck’ flies out of his mouth, we look at the ground. A ‘bitch’ flies out his mouth, we smirk. These white kids, third friend giggles. She’s from New York. She is the darkest member of her Dominican/ Puerto Rican family and has just found the strength to consider herself black despite her grandmother’s wishes. She’s making her own truth from scratch. These white kids, I giggle.

Nazareth Hassan





Anthony Pellegrino

Cartography For An Impermanent Candlewax

In August, leave it by the window. Let people see it. Let them touch it. Be proud. That’s your heart. It’s big and beautiful and full of peach pie. When the rain falls-- and it will-it’ll come inside, cold and wailing about wet sneakers, and things like that. Kiss that spot on it’s head. Don’t stop its crying, at least for a while. Someday we’ll wake up to sun and chocolate. Hold me like the light wrapping the notre dame in its palms wide skin orange-etched October all cloudy blue pink Maybe that’s the wrong song. Maybe you don’t want it anymore. Maybe these days I write love out of verse.

Best intentions fold and rot-grass to peat to coal. Oil spilling over into the river that flows from your hands to mine. January frosts. (can you know someone



It dries into gunpowder and stains my teeth. I could light a match, I think. I could throw it back. But I have that book you gave me. The one I wrote in every day, just like you said. So I’ll wrap it all together in string and bury it in the yard, and in April, I’ll call it a flower. Who knows. Light takes a long time to come back to us. Love returns without judgment.

Declan Zhang



Kamilya Issaliyeva How often do we think of the way we perceive the world around us? How many of us realize that we interpret events and human behavior through the distorted prism of our personal and limited experiences? All of the subjective realities that we desire to perceive as the universal truth are polluting our awareness of the act of interpretation. There is no interpretation without destruction and violation; the process of your explanation of the original is the process of your contamination. To truly understand something is to acknowledge the limitation of your interpretation and the contamination that each of the spectator creates while looking at the piece through his distorted reality.


Sera Levy





We interviewed six New York City based artists about w h o t h e y a r e , h o w t h e y fe e l t h e y are perceived,and what they want their art to translate about them.

Photography: H o y t G y u r i c s e k Interviews: T h o m a s C h o u & Malcolm Durning Creative Direction: A l a y n a R i c k a r d



We are incredibly thankful to these dynamic creatives for enduring the 85° heat to chat with us and for their willingness to open up about themselves and their artistic perspectives.



E: My name is Eliah, I’m from Portsmouth, VA and I’m 21 years old. T: Tell me about your art, what do you do? E: I am a multi-disciplinary performance artist. The work I’m doing is kind of at a shifting point. I’ve been making music this year, and that’s not something I ever thought I’d do. I was writing poetry, and it was getting kind of annoying just doing that. I started setting it to music, and working with collaborators. I just did an independent project as my thesis for the Experimental Theatre Wing called “Rusty Catfish Wonder.” I think that’s actually going to turn into some sort of street performance. A lot of people from my show were from the South. I love working with other non-binary, queer, Southern escapees. I’m really interested in working with people who identify as non-artists or non-singers. I like layering them with people that do. MD: What does that bring to the work? E: I just feel like so many people who are in school or in the theatre community have presumptions about how it should go. A lot of people who have never seen a theatre performance, that go to one for the first time will clap in the middle. I want that. I want people to break the barrier between audience and stage. I feel like a lot of people think they have to have some sort of training, but there’s something to being able to teach yourself, and be intuitive — and not letting your training hold you back. MD: You mentioned that you like to perform with other queer and nonbinary artists. What about working

with them draws you to that? E: I’ve just noticed that queer, non-binary, and, generally, poor people are more giving of their time, of their resources, are more willing to share. They’re more willing to expand outside of designated genres. Genre in French is the same word for “gender.” I feel like queer and non-binary artists are looking for something, or searching for queer sounds. They’re really out here making work that they believe in. MD: How does your gender and sexuality influence your work? What do you hope to translate to your audience about the work you’re creating and who you are as a person and artist? E: I love to create a world in my work where gender isn’t real. My work is not just for queer people and non-binary people and trans people, even though it is for them. I love to do work in queer DIY spaces, but I think showing people an exploration where we let people express themselves in all types of ways allows the non-queer to explore it for a second. It allows them to see it. I was painting walls after “Rusty Catfish Wonder” with four women, and someone made a joke about what if we all took our shirts off. So I just took my shirt off, and other people started doing it. The people who were more uncomfortable started doing it. Then, someone made a joke about, “What kind of porno is this?” And I just responded, “It’s not, we’re just painting.” I don’t always make a statement with gender and sexuality. I like to normalize it within the world I create, which will never be what’s normalized in this country. Or maybe it will be. That’s the hope.


M: My name is Maya Hendricks, I was born in India, but I lived in Atlanta for high school. I would primarily consider myself a visual artist, then an actor. T: What types of visual art do you do? M: I do a lot of drawing. It started off sort of like journaling, but it’s more like drawing with ink and charcoal and crayon. Honestly anything. I do it on anything too. Paper, cardboard, canvas. T: Have you ever thought about doing graffiti? M: Yes, I have. I’ve thought about it a lot in fact. I want to figure out how to make a stencil, because I think it’s the quickest, most efficient way. I’d do it wherever…


is. The weight of life really hit me. Drawing these monsters, they have boobs and vaginas on them, and it was sort of like me expressing this innocence but monstrosity, of my female body and my experience of what life means. It can be something that takes over all of a sudden, that you don’t know is there. It can be something that has consequence, it can be taken away, or given. A choice, or not a choice. Every time I would — I haven’t actually talked about it like this before — but every time I would draw, it was cathartic. My drawings started to become creatures from a different world. Once I clock out of this world and enter that world, I become the master of that world, and I can control their bodies and their life in a way that I have felt I can’t necessarily do in my own.

T: What inspires you to draw?

MD: What do you want your audience to take away from your art?

M: I draw monsters, and I call them my ogos. It’s a name me and my sister made up. This year, I went through something very traumatic; I found out I was pregnant and had to get an abortion. It was the most terrifying and liberating experience for me because I realized how fragile everything

M: I would say that my goal is more for myself. How can I make my work more articulate? How can I make the pain more prevalent? I don’t even want to delve into thinking about what that means, like what people should or shouldn’t be seeing. I hope to tell this part of my story to people who care to hear.



T: How do you think of yourself as a creative? K: It’s morphed a lot over time, I came out of undergrad as a performer, and years later, I now find myself more as a generative artist, a theatre-maker. It’s a better term for all the interdisciplinary stuff that I doplaywriting, directing, producing, performing. I came out of undergrad doing auditions, and doing the whole actor track. After a certain point, maybe a year or so, I felt an incredible need and desire to make work- great work that reflected more of what I wanted to be doing in the theatre. T: Where do you draw your creative inspirations from? K: I’m a very visual person. Environments and landscapes really inspire me. I have this theater company with a bunch of people I went to NYU with, and we often use handmade and craft objects to create landscapes and environments for my plays. And, as of late, collaborations. Working really intimately with people, and learning how to negotiate those boundaries is really exciting. T: Do you and your theater company ever perform work that’s not your own? K: We did one piece, called

‘To the Left of the Pantry, and Under the Sugar Shack’ at MoMA, and that was sort of our foray into immersive theatre. We wanted to recreate a thing called a memory palace; it’s an ancient memorization technique where you take what you’re trying to memorize and associate it with an insane, grotesque image. Then you place that image in a really familiar place. When you walk through the space, you could pull a drawer and see the image, and then think of the text. Content-wise, we ended up asking our community for memories, so we collected these memories and curated 35 artists, and they created 15 minutes of work to present in the memory palace. So the audience could take time to walk around the space, crawl into things, discover different hidden things. T: What do you hope the audience takes away from your work? Is there a theme or message in your work that you aim to send to your audience? K: Thematically, if I were to look back on all the stuff that I’ve made, I feel like memory and consciousness. Specifically, how memory and consciousness is racialized, gendered, sexualized, fragmented, and how that, in one body, can create so much conflict. I hope audiences that come to my shows can connect with those themes, and see them in themselves. Reflect on that, maybe feel a little uncomfortable, and experience similar conflict.


D: My name is Danny Cole, I’m 18 years old, and I’m an artist. T: A lot of your work is centered upon your personal experiences, and tapping into your own world. When you’re in the process of creating, how do you translate your ideas onto canvas? D: Usually when I start a piece, there’s a lot of time spent planning — more time than it takes me to actually make the piece. The planning not only involves what the piece is going to look like, but the specific focus of the work. I always walk away with a new perspective on whatever it is that I began with. I use my characters not as something to describe a physical situation I’ve been in, but as a tool to convey the emotional place the message is coming from. I wish I could say I’m using them to personify something, but again, they’re not people. They’re characters. T: What are the messages that you aim to send through your work? D: So much of what we do is just to make others comfortable. I’ve been focused on trying to abandon that, trying to strip away all these external influences on myself, but so much of our society revolves around it. It doesn’t allow for people to be individuals and be the true, unfiltered versions of themselves. MD: What does that unfiltered version of you look like? D: It’s difficult to answer that. I tried to figure out, is there


anything unique to me? Or is everything I’ve done based upon other influences? The only thing that I was able to find is this dream-world that I depict. That, I know for a fact, has come from only me because it’s from my head. That’s what I use to convey everything in my work. MD: How do you go about stripping away the influences? How do you further define your world? D: For a while, I isolated myself from pretty much everything in my life — people, activities, whatever it was, I’d stick solo. I did accomplish what I wanted to accomplish, but it involved a lot of torturing myself and feeling very alone. That’s not necessarily sustainable, so I’m trying to find a healthy balance. I think the biggest thing for me is not feeling like I need to perform in any kind of way, because they’re here for me — not for whatever version of me I’m trying to project. I only released my work for the first time at the beginning of this year. The reason I’ve been able to do the things I have is because of my privilege. I’m super conscious of that. I come from a family that does have money, so I’m aware that as I was starting out, I was throwing in every last dollar I had into my projects, and that’s a luxury that many other artists do not have. I’m very grateful, and I hope to be able to use the privileges that I was born into to help other artists that don’t have that as I progress in my career. I’m not that big yet, but as things grow, I’m definitely trying to give back.


B: My name is Bayan, I’m 21, I’m a Libra. I’m a history major, and in terms of what kind of artist I am, I would say that I’m more of a writer. I’m creative with my writing, but I feel conflicted sometimes about calling myself an artist or creative, because so much of my work is research heavy. I think I find a good balance between art and research, and making a product rooted in academia. T: What topics do you like to write about? B: I like researching histories that are not really talked about — histories that are veiled by certain narratives. I love doing the work of uncovering narratives, and breaking things down. Looking at them through the context of imperialism and colonialism. Looking at the roots of things and seeing how they’ve been hidden over the course of history. MD: What topics in everyday life are you particularly passionate about? B: I think that’s evolved over time, but I’ve always been interested in the law and government. That’s what I came to NYU looking into. Over time, I’ve used my interests in those fields as a means of understanding myself and where I come from. Now I do a lot of research on the Arab world, and the ways that race as a function of law plays out in the Arab world. Where I’m from, Sudan, lives at a weird intersection of race and racism, and uses the law as a mean of racism. That’s really been my focus so far, understanding the ways in which laws and governance function as racism. T: Do you ever think of going to law school?


B: No. Hell no. That doesn’t provide a creative outlet. It would be three years of memorizing things and regurgitating them. I want to push to a PhD in history, and create a thesis and dissertation that speaks to what I’m interested in, and speaks to my creative or artistic understandings. I like bridging the aesthetic and the political; I find it’s an expressive means of getting to the root of what I want to talk about. I love merging the ways that they coexist, and speak to each other. I’ve gotten into Arab literature that speaks to a sort of political moment because I feel like you could study a certain war or moment for however many years, but until you read a novel or a book of poetry that speaks to the horror of experiencing war every single day, you truly won’t understand the experience. You won’t be able to speak to it or craft a research topic or narrative that speaks to it. T: What inspires your curiosity? B: I think myself. I think the questions that I hold and have held all my life because I haven’t been given the language or necessary resources to answer them. Particularly questions of identity and race. Like I said, I’m from Sudan — I’m Arab and I’m black. Being in America, there’s not really a space where both of those identities are looked at together. I’ve always wondered, Where do I fit into the American scheme of race? I find joy in academia because it’s allowed me the language and outlet by which to understand myself. It’s questions of identity that I’ve dealt with all my life, and, now, I’ve finally found the space to deal with them.



A: I’m Alex Bartner, I’m 23 years old, and I live in New York City. T: How do you think of yourself as an artist? A: Right now, I see myself mainly as an actor. I’d love to get into writing, or maybe producing and directing one day. You always hear that you have to create opportunities for yourself, for representation. The life of an actor can be pretty isolating, so it’s important to expose yourself to different mediums within the arts, and give yourself the opportunity to collaborate with other artists. You hear experiences and perspectives from people you wouldn’t have otherwise. T: What unique aspects of your identity do you try and channel through your characters? A: It depends on the role, but it’s usually tiny things like behavioral habits or ticks. I’ve never had to answer questions about my race or my sexuality when it comes to a character. MD: Although you haven’t dealt with it in character form necessarily, as you do enter a space as a man of color and a queer person, do you ever feel like that comes to the space with you? Does it stifle you? Does it benefit you? A: I’d like to say that it just is. If I’m going into an audition room where I don’t know the people, I

sometimes worry about the person behind the table. I don’t know what their views are, their opinions about me, if they fall to the left or right politically. Sometimes I do hold back, unfortunately, and I recognize when I do. T: What do you think your main creative inspirations are? What inspires you? A: The work of others, films I’ve seen, stories I’ve read. I love the work of Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyongo, but I think Will Smith really did it for me. Have you ever seen The Pursuit of Happyness? It’s incredible. The connection to his son was obviously so personal, and it’s inspirational for so many reasons. I think it was one of the first experiences I’ve had with a movie that impacted me so much. MD: If you were to close your eyes and see your career in 5 years, what would that look like? A: I want to wear more creative hats than just being an actor. MD: What’s wrong with just being an actor? A: Nothing’s wrong with just being an actor. But with everything that’s been happening politically and socially, I think it’s important to take more control and make your voice heard — while encouraging others to do the same thing.



Rizelle Rosales




D e r e k K o f f i -Z i t e r & Raj Miller 54






y La e c





i. that night i painted love the color of your bedroom window. dark blue like your eyes. and your sheets. tangled in each other. i drew strokes on your shoulder blades. i was struck by your jaw. the angle of it. definitive. measured. like the distance between morning and night. like the time it took for you to say- you’ve had enough.

ii. i stopped painting for a while. felt like i lost my touch. everything was blues. all i saw was dusk and bleak and sky and black. dark hues. and i forgot about the sun. and the stars. and the way it feels to stand on the tips of my toes. dancing. in brooklyn. with you.

iii. out of the dusk came the dawn and it was red. bright. it called to me in a dream. and i awoke in a cold sweat. heat. like the new york city pavement. you tasted like summer. i felt new. and i painted the city in shades of you: red, orange, yellow, green, and for just a moment, blue. 60

Julie Martin and Sojourner Brown 61

nd h K Mel im Sar and iss a ah M Joh eli Kim s s a a J nd ara ohn Mel h K so iss im and a J ohn Mel son iss a J ohn son




Joey Solomon

Stephanie Barajas In my piece, I depict a version of myself - one that is deeply rooted in Mexican culture, comfortable in the surrounding environment but never really fitting in. I show Vianney, an artist of a similar background, wearing the classic folklorico attire that is typical to Jalisco, the state where I grew up in, walking along the streets of San Francisco, roaming its parks.  The same streets which saw me grow out of adolescence into early adulthood, transitioning from Spanish into English, from Mexico to America‌ rejecting the idea of assimilation, but rather adopting the culture and incorporating it into the person I have become. An immigrant with an American passport, who speaks the language, eats the food and enjoys the privileges of someone born in the US but who will never forget where she comes from. Translation to me means going from one language and culture to another, understanding both and never letting go of either.