Barbara Bernstein, Visual Arts; Amherst, VA – Barbara Bernstein was the 2017 Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation Creative Fellow at the Millay Colony for Virginia. Other residencies include The American Academy in Rome, the MacDowell Colony, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and other international venues. She has received grants from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, the Pennsylvania Arts Council, The Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts, and The HK Mellon/Pittsburgh Foundation among others.
She has had numerous solo exhibitions in the US and abroad; her work is represented by the Drawing Center and Artists Space, both in New York City. Bernstein was awarded a commission by the Virginia Transit System for design enhancements of seven stations in the Crystal City/Potomac Yard areas. Her project for the Lynchburg Neighborhood Development Foundation was featured in the Public Art Dialogue Journal, an international review published by Routledge.
Bernstein’s essay, “Drawing a Breath “by is one of ten treatises included in, “Drawing in the Twenti-first Century: The Politics and Poetics of Contemporary Practice”, edited by Elizabeth Pergam and published by Ashgate in 2015. Also in 2015, Bernstein’s Lecture, “Drawing Attention” discussed her methodologies of drawing at the National Science Foundation in Washington, DC as part of its Art and Science series. In 2016, she was invited to exhibit in the International Art of Paper, a small group show of selected artists, the exhibit sponsored by the University of North Carolina. She has been invited back to the Philips Collection (Washington, DC), for her drawing workshops, and upcoming exhibitions are underway for 2018 and 2019 in Mexico City and Europe.
Gabrielle Lucille Fuentes, Fiction; Athens, Georgia – “My first novel, The Sleeping World, was published by Touchstone (Simon & Schuster) in September 2016. My work has appeared or is forthcoming in One Story, Cosmonauts Avenue, Slice, Pank, The Georgia Review, The Collagist, The Coffin Factory, NANO Fiction, Western Humanities Review, and elsewhere. I have received fellowships from Yaddo and Blue Mountain Center and was a Bernard O’Keefe Scholar in Fiction at Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. My short story “The Elephant’s Foot” was a Distinguished Story in Best American Short Stories 2016.
I graduated from Brown University with honors, Magna Cum Laude, and Phi Beta Kappa. I earned my MFA from the University of Colorado, Boulder. At the University of Colorado, I was awarded a competitive University Fellowship. I am pursuing a PHD at the University of Georgia where I was awarded a Research Assistantship which relieved two years of teaching. I am currently a Graduate Assistant teaching creative writing. I am Cuban-American, was born in Madison, Wisconsin and now call Athens, Georgia home.”
Eva Heisler, Poetry; Ramstein, Germany – Eva Heisler is a Maryland-born poet and art critic/historian. Her poems have been widely published in journals such as Crazyhorse, The Indiana Review, Poetry Northwest, Tupelo Quarterly, and BOMB. She has published two books of poems: Reading Emily Dickinson in Icelandic (Kore Press) and Drawing Water (Noctuary Press). Honors include The Nation’s “Discovery” Award, the Poetry Society of America’s Emily Dickinson Award, and a National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Seminar grant. A Fulbright grant brought her to Iceland in 1997 where she lived for several years, researching Icelandic art with a focus on conceptual practices. Art historical publications include “Soulful Mathematics: Poetry and Icelandic Conceptualism,” an essay exploring the relevance of Icelandic literary traditions to the emergence of Icelandic Conceptualism published in Mosaic, An Interdisciplinary Critical Journal (2016) and the catalog essay for Katrin Sigurdardottir’s installation Foundation at the 2013 Venice Biennale. She is the Visual Arts editor of Asymptote, a journal of world literature in translation.
Kyrin Hobson, Visual Arts; Flossnor, IL – “I have always been an artist. Growing up in New Orleans, art making was my natural way of interacting with the characters, spirits, and stories that filled my eyes and ears. Everything I have done since has created what I consider an inspired foundation, leading to a point in my life when I am most able to make work and have a self-assured artistic voice. My art is almost completely based on visions and understanding derived from my family history and culture; my decade-long career in non-western art museums (The Museum for African Art, NY and the UCLA Fowler Museum of Cultural History); and my experiences (ongoing) of raising four magical and challenging children.
Though I went to art school (UCLA 1988) and followed that with a Master’s degree in Museum Studies (NYU 1993), I am now a mostly self taught artist. I committed to having an art career when I was knee-deep in raising a family and it has been my salvation. I have grown tremendously through my involvement with the Women’s Art Institute at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, through studio intensives with NY artist Steven Assael, through reading countless books on art theory and practice, through taking the occasional class and by just gritting through working in my studio in every moment I could find. I have shown at Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Inner City Arts (MN), Bloomington Art Center (MN) and College of Saint Catherine (MN). My work has been supported by a grant form the Minnesota State Arts Board. I do a limited number of commissioned portraits to self-fund my personal work. These are held in private collections in the US, France and Germany.”
Yigit Kolat, Composing; Seattle, WA – Born in Ankara, Turkey in 1984, Yigit received Doctor of Musical Arts degree from University of Washington (2014). Selected professional recognitions can be listed as follows: Edward T. Cone Bogliasco Fellowship in Music (2016), Nomination for 2017 Rome Prize in Music Composition (2016), First Prize in Toru Takemitsu Competition (2015, Jury: Kaija Saariaho, second American to receive the award), Finalist, Queen Elisabeth Competition (2013), Second Prize in Seventh Henri Dutilleux International Composition Competition (no First Prize was given in its category).
Collaborations include: Talea Ensemble, The Argento New Music Project, Seattle Symphony Orchestra (USA), Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra (Japan), Solistes de L’Orchestre de Tours, Pascal Gallois, Donatienne Michel-Dansac (France), Nieuw Ensemble, Black Pencil Ensemble, Duo Mares (The Netherlands), Peter Sheppard-Skærved and Aaron Shorr (Great Britain), Athelas Ensemble (Denmark), Presidential Symphony Orchestra of Turkey.
Jonathan Monaghan, Visual Arts; Washington, DC – Jonathan Monaghan (b. 1986, New York) works across a range of media, including prints, sculpture and animated video, to produce otherworldly objects and narratives. Drawing on wide-ranging sources, such as historical artworks, science fiction, and advertising, his works seem to elicit subconscious anxieties associated with technology, consumerism and authority. Past exhibitions and screenings of his work include The Sundance Film Festival, The Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, and The Eyebeam Art + Technology Center. His work has been featured in several media outlets including The Washington Post, VICE, The Wall Street Journal and The Village Voice. Monaghan is represented by bitforms gallery in New York and Galerie 22,48m2 in Paris.
Rafia Zakaria, Non-Fiction; Indianapolis, IN – Rafia is a journalist, attorney and a human rights activist. Born in Karachi, Pakistan, she moved to the United States in 1994 at the age of 18 as a young bride in an arranged marriage to a man of Pakistani American descent. She attended Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee in 1998, and obtained a law degree from Indiana University in 2003. She passed the Bar Exam while she was going through a divorce and raising her small daughter. In 2004 she began work on her doctorate in Political Philosophy focusing on issues of multiculturalism, Muslim women and Sharia Law. In 2008, she was awarded the John Edwards Fellowship, the highest honor a graduate student can receive at Indiana University.
Rafia writes a weekly column for DAWN, the largest English language newspaper in Pakistan where she covers an array of topics including political assassinations, war on terror, suicide bombings and Talibanization of Pakistan, and Sharia law. She uses this platform to advocate for women’s rights in an environment where religious fundamentalism and extremism are grave and pressing threats to women’s autonomy. She is a columnist for Boston Review and writes regularly for Guardian Books, The New York Times Book Review, The New Republic and Lithub. She recently published a white paper with the Tow Center at the Columbia University School of Journalism on American-Muslims and the 2016 Elections. From 20012-2016 she was a regular contributor for Al Jazeera America. She has been recognized by numerous organizations in Pakistan and the United States for her work on women’s rights.
April Residents: Lenny Sideman, Seema Yasmin, Brandon Shimoda, Kathy Conde, Jessica Hankey, Robert Brinkenhoff
Robert Brinkerhoff, Visual Arts; Barrington, RI – Robert is an illustrator, painter and professor, but that constellation of professional activity is always in delightful flux. At Rhode Island School of Design since 1996, he has served many leadership roles at the College, including nine years as Illustration Department Head and, beginning in July 2017, Dean of Fine Arts. His curriculum development—for both RISD and other institutions—explores the intersection of illustration, design, writing, literature, semiotics, social justice and narrative theory, as well as studio engagement which transcends arbitrary boundaries in fine arts. Brinkerhoff is committed to both practical and theoretical concerns in the development of young artists and designers in both his teaching and professional activity, and his career as an illustrator and designer has enabled productive relationships with major corporations and institutions of higher learning including MIT, Brown University and Brandeis University, and regional and national magazines. Since 2011 he has been the illustrator for Annenberg VUE: Voices in Urban Education, a publication produced by The Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University.
Robert has exhibited his paintings, drawings and video work both nationally and internationally and has been awarded artist residencies in the US, Ireland and Italy. From 2007-2009 he served as Chief Critic for RISD’s European Honors Program in Rome and was a Fine Arts Faculty Mentor for the Salama Foundation’s Emerging Artists Fellowship in the UAE, helping shape a studio residency program for young Emirati artists. In service to the illustration profession he was Education Chair for ICON7: The Illustration Conference, and ICON8’s Vice-President from 2010-2014. In 2015 RISD hosted the Illustration Research Symposium: Illustrator as Public Intellectual under his co-leadership and organization.
Kathy Conde, Fiction; Superior, CO – Kathy Conde’s work has appeared in Atlanta Review, Crab Orchard Review, CutThroat: A Journal of the Arts, New Poets of the American West, Orbis Quarterly, Poetry East, South Dakota Review, Southword, Underground Voices, Word Riot, and others. She has received prizes and scholarships from the Salem International Literary Awards, Crab Orchard Review, the Munster Literature Centre, Aspen Words, CutThroat: A Journal of the Arts, and Writing by Writers and has recently been a finalist at Glimmer Train and New Letters. In addition to the Millay Colony residency, she has also been awarded residencies at Playa and Writing by Writers. She holds an MFA from Naropa University and is past fiction editor for Bombay Gin, Naropa’s Literary Magazine. She has lived in the Rocky Mountain West, herding cattle and training horses, and in Spain, teaching English as a second language, and has traveled in South America, India, Nepal, Japan, and Europe. She now lives in Colorado with her husband and son.
Jessica Hankey, Visual Arts; Ithaca, NY – Born in Los Angeles, California in 1979, Jessica Hankey graduated from Bard College in 2003 with a BA in Studio Art and Latin American Studies. She received an MFA from UC Berkeley in 2014 and was a resident at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2015.
Hankey has exhibited nationally and internationally, at institutions that include the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, and the Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena, CA. She has participated in recent exhibitions at HERE in New York, NY and CTRL+SHFT in Oakland, CA. In the summer of 2017 Hankey will begin work on a site-specific project at the Rubin Center for the Visual Arts at the University of Texas, El Paso.
Lenny Seidman, Composing; Philadelphia, PA – Lenny is a composer and tabla player whose work since the early 90’s has focused on contemporary applications for tabla with emphasis on collaboration with predominantly non western drumming and post modern and non western dance traditions. He is co director of Spoken Hand Percussion Orchestra (20 years) that unifies the drumming traditions of Afro Cuban bata, North Indian tabla, Afro Brazilian samba and West African djembe. He toured internationally as a music collaborator and performer with pioneer hip hop choreographer Rennie Harris’ “Facing Mekka” for 70 shows over a 4 year span. His international touring also includes Atzilut (Arabic/Jewish Middle Eastern music), Philip Hamilton’s Voices and Group Motion Dance Co. Lenny has also performed with such musicians as Zakir Hussain, Simon Shaheen, Kenny Endo, Michael Daugherty, Yair Dalal, Butch Morris, Yacouba Sissoko, and choreographers/dancers Michael Sakamoto, Viji Rao, Cynthia Lee, Helmut Gottschild, Cheng-Chieh, Sen Hea Ha, Ananya Chatterjea, Kim Arrow and Pallabi Chakravorty. He is the composer for Nadine Patterson’s feature film “Tango Macbeth”, helped develop the percussion music and performed in the contemporary opera “Ghosts of Monticello” by composer Garret Fischer and directed by Emily Martin, and was commissioned by Kim Arrow for his “Quasimodo in the Outback”, Helmut Gottschild for his “Meet Mr. R” and Ballet X’s Christine Cox. Lenny was a guest artist at Swarthmore College’s Department of Music and Dance for 12 years collaborating with their taiko and gamelan ensembles, teaching tabla and working with the kathak classes.
He was awarded residency fellowships at APPEX (Asian Pacific Performing Arts Exchange) at UCLA and Headlands Center for the Arts in Sausalito, CA. His creative work has been supported by Independence Foundation, PA Council on the Arts, Meet the Composer, Pew Center for Arts and Heritage and Philadelphia Cultural Fund. Lenny has studied tabla with Zakir Hussain, Ishwar Lal Misra, Chhote Lal Misra and Kiran Deshpande and Carnatic music with Adrian L’Armand. He is also the world music and jazz curator at Painted Bride Art Center in Philadelphia and teaches tabla privately.
Brandon Shimoda, Non-Fiction; Portland, OR – Brandon Shimoda is a poet and writer. He is the author of several books, most recently Evening Oracle (Letter Machine Editions), which received the 2016 William Carlos Williams Award from the Poetry Society of America. Other books include Portuguese (co-published by Octopus Books and Tin House Books) and O Bon (Litmus Press). He is also the co-editor of a retrospective collection of writing by Lebanese-American poet Etel Adnan (To look at the sea is to become what one is; Nightboat Books), and a collection of poems by Wong May (Picasso’s Tears; Octopus Books).
He is currently writing a book about (the ongoing ruins of) the mass incarceration of Japanese immigrants and Japanese Americans during WWII. Some of these writings have been published in Design Week Portland, Hyperallergic, The Margins (Asian American Writers Workshop), and The New Inquiry.
He has lived the past few years with his partner, the poet Dot Devota, in Kaohsiung (Taiwan), Kure (Hiroshima), Marfa (TX), Portland (OR), St. Louis (MO), and, for the moment, in Tucson (AZ).
Seema Yasmin, Non-Fiction; Dallas, TX – Seema Yasmin is a poet, doctor and journalist from London currently living in the U.S. She was a Pulitzer prize finalist in 2017 for her reporting with the Dallas Morning News. Yasmin trained in medicine at the University of Cambridge and in journalism at the University of Toronto. She served as an officer in the Epidemic Intelligence Service at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention where she investigated disease outbreaks in prisons, bordertowns and tribal reservations. Yasmin won the 2016 Diode Editions poetry chapbook contest. Her poems appear or are forthcoming in Glass, Coal Hill Review, Bateau and The Shallow Ends, among others. She is working on a memoir about epidemics, her first full length collection of poems and a biography of an AIDS scientist which will be published in 2018.