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A micro fellowship across the basic needs
A container built to
The Holes in the Wall Collective Fellowship is designed to jumpstart, dig deeper or help finish a specific project, related to one of the 12 monthly themes.
12 themes. 12 Fellows.
For projects big and small.
The Holes in the Wall Collective Fellowship offers support, structure and accountability to people working across fields and sectors
The Fellowship offers feedback that guides and lends support towards the formulating, enacting or completing of a project or process. We'll help reframe out of echo chambers and bounce beyond one's wheelhouse, and connect you to others working creatively in other mediums and contexts.
Past Feedback Fellows
Elaine Agyemang Tontoh
It is not new to realize most of our modern economic systems do not function without some work being valued less than others, with some labor not valued at all, even as it allows the whole system to function. This idea of invisible labor, especially when it comes to traditionally women’s work, is finally getting noticed, but the nuances of how this manifests are only now getting their due attention…
We are excited to highlight the thoughtful and important work of Elaine Agyemeng Tontoh (PhD) for our economy fellow, looking at the conundrums of the triple day of motherhood- raising kids, earning money and having time for one’s one own well-being- through an economic lens.
Elaine is a maternal feminist theorist and a development economist.
She earned her doctorate degree from the Department of Economics at the New School for Social Research in May of 2021. Her theoretical research advances an original thesis to address the triple day of motherhood through a Marxist-feminist perspective and the maternal capability suppression and maternal economic oppression within capitalist societies. Elaine’s research has been published in the Journal of Human Development and Capabilities- check it out here.
Elaine is originally from Ghana (West Africa) where she obtained her Bachelor of Arts and Master of Philosophy degrees in Economics from the University of Ghana in Accra. She is a young mother of three young boys and currently a Visiting Professor of Economics at the Peter J. Tobin College of Business at St. John’s University in New York.
We long for justice to flow like a mighty stream, but when dams get built to extract its power, change can be hard to trust. This November we look at what justice really means, and for whom. And with this bold next generation's will of fire, we chew on the biggest questions with Jahmya Valentine to see if we're come closer or further to equity, fairness, justice and a new governance...
Jahmya Valentine is a 20 year-old, first generation Jamaican American, raised in her Rastafarian home in Brooklyn NY with her parents and 3 brothers. Jahmya, also known as Jace, has devoted herself to fighting for justice for black and brown youth in NYC for 4 years. After graduating high school, the Black Lives Matter Movement and School Integration became huge conversations that she was integral in, where she helped structure legislation, lobbied for law change, led rallies, and advocated for equity and justice. She has worked with amazing people [Ben Harper, Tenesha Grant] and powerful organizations [Holes in the Wall, BCCP, IntegrateNYC, Fair Play, YAH (Youth Alliance 4 Housing), Teachers Unite] and even sitting for a time on the mayoral Fair Student Funding Task Force.
Being black, a woman and a young person are all part of her identity and became even more apparent once she entered the workforce. Expressing herself through photography, writing and art, Jace daydreams of a new New York City. Fighting for justice is more than protest and rallies- it’s on the day-to-day life for Jace. It’s about the people and the lives it effects. Jace believes it's time to reimagine our justice system. We're listening.
Xavier Moysén Álvarez
Essential to everything from our survival to relationships, communication is one of our most potent currencies, and therefore has been used by every side to propagate and obfuscate the truth. This month, Xavier Álvarez helps us delve deeper into the thicket of information and power...
Born and raised in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, Xavier is an internationally published researcher (Colombia and Mexico) with an interest on the interplay between New Media and Politics, particularly voting behavior, populism and nationalism, post-truth, and radicalization. With two undergraduate degrees in Sociology and Humanistic and Social Studies from the University of Monterrey (UDEM), he has worked as a full time researcher at CEEAD, and is currently a collaborator at Vocanova, an independent Mexican journal.
Xavier spearheaded VOTA 2021, an urban art project aimed at increasing awareness on the importance of voting for counterbalances to maintain a healthy democracy through graffiti tags and instagram.
He is currently based in Brooklyn and is earning his Masters in Sociology at The New School for Social Research.
Design is like the GPS of vision, and yet sometimes, when the road ends, it’s just how you get home again. Social design looks at relationships to people and things, things and environment. This month we’re taking the matrix pill to uncover how it’s all connected and how we embody the future we want...
Amer Jandali is the founder of Future Meets Present, an environmental design studio dedicated to promoting a vision of a sustainable future.
Amer's work as an environmental futurist finds the indications that we are already creating the future we need, and amplifies their possibilities. Amer's early career began as a nightclub and radio DJ in various clubs around Las Cruces, New Mexico and El Paso, Texas. He has since moved to New York City where he earned a Masters in Design for Social Innovation from the School of Visual Arts and is currently an adjunct professor of Social Entrepreneurship at John Jay College in Manhattan.
This month he's closing out climate week NYC with his fifth annual "Marketplace of the future." Check it out.
Identity is put on us as much as we create it. This month we look at the ability to be who we are as we are, and expand beyond the binaries of this and that, black and white, us and them…
Hidemi Tagaki has been creating community-based Photography projects, installations, and videos for the last 15 years in New York City.
With her work, Hidemi explores the intimacies of public engagement in different ways. Known for capturing the color, joy and life of the people who are living throughout the diverse communities of NYC, Hidemi’s latest project looks to her own family’s identity, contributing to the national discourse on mixed-race identity, racism, and immigration in America. Identities is a photography installation project starting with Hidemi’s own family identities—particularly her daughter who is half Haitian American and half Japanese American, was born and is growing up in New York City.
By creating complex and some whimsically self-costuming images of mixed-race life and its public and private faces, Hidemi uses her art as a tool to explore racial identity, race relations, public presentation of the self, and cultural norms. Through this process, she searches to visualize her family’s mixed roots and the cultural tendrils that have grown and intertwined from them.
Hidemi was born in Kyoto, Japan and lives in Brooklyn, NY. Takagi has exhibited both nationally and internationally (London, Madrid, Tel Aviv, Berlin, and Paris). Her notable selected exhibitions include the Bronx Museum of the Arts, Queens Museum, BRIC Media Art Center, and the Nathan Cummings Foundation. Find out more about her and her work here.
What we build and how we build it will shape the coming future like never before. The sky is no longer the limit and yet the consequences of having no limits are coming to haunt us. Our July fellow, Prithvi Aravind, is an emerging architect looking at the world we're in and taking the actions to make it better...
Prithvi Aravind is an architect working in the Construction Industry in Project Management. "Prithvi" means the Earth in Sanskrit, and she feels a duty to build better through sustainable building and creating efficient structures. She completed her Bachelors in Architecture from SPA, New Delhi where she practiced as an architect designing and building small-scale public infrastructure projects in ecologically sensitive areas in the Himalayan Region of India. There she realized the need to understand the full construction aspect of the project, which brought her to Columbia University for her Masters in Construction Administration, where she currently attends while also working part-time in NYC.
Her dream project is to transform an abandoned building - a house, factory or any structure with a unique character and history behind it, and retrofit the structure to convert it into a space to encourage creativity using local materials sourced from the site and its surroundings through a technique of construction called "Rammed Earth." Through this fellowship, Prithvi hopes to not just design and conceptualize such spaces, but also continue her research on the use of natural materials and building techniques to blur the lines between nature and the built.
Photo by Svet Jacque @svetjacque
Clothing: it's what we wear and yet often, what wears us. This month we check the mirror from more than one angle with this month's fellow Camilla Carper...
Camilla Carper is a performance artist currently based in Southern California, critically approaching dress as a tool for social inquiry. After studying Fashion Design at Parsons School of Design they became skeptical of the damaging practices of the fashion industry. Carper co-founded a sustainable clothing company called FEMAIL FOREVER that focused on upcycling garments. Even when ethically creating clothing through this brand, Carper felt complicit in perpetuating the ‘fashion cycle’ by encouraging consumption. They began searching for new strategies and venues to explore how humans relate to clothing. By working outside of the fashion industry Carper’s work examines capitalist structures and the social conditions behind people’s desire for newness.
Carper’s performance practice or ‘Dressing Practice’ is set within the framework of their daily life. They establish a duration and set of rules around dress to conduct social experiments. Clothing is the variable in the experiment and Carper’s body is the control. Carper believes clothing is a document of the place, time, and culture it occupies. The forms of the clothing in these experiments reveals information about their environments. By systematically wearing and creating garments Carper aims to make this context more legible.
In their project ON LOAN Carper spent the summer of 2019 wearing only borrowed clothing. During this fellowship, Carper will use research from that project to create new work through writing, making garments, and creating performances, integrating the insights gained into experiences that others can learn from.
Everything eats. Whether we're breaking bread or running from gluten, our lives are hallmarked by what makes it to the plate. This month we chew on the systems that feed us, and those trying to make them more equitable...
Colin Dring was born in the traditional, unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam). His parents are both settlers to Canada, his mother from China and his father from England, and they form the root to his connection to place and his inquisitive nature. Colin teaches, studies,and schemes at the University of British Columbia working towards his PhD. His research uncovers formal government approaches to creating (or preventing) food futures through agricultural planning in contexts of difference, complexity, and unpredictability. Before his studies, he worked in his home community on anti-hunger and anti-poverty alongside diasporic communities and changemakers across Turtle Island (or what is dominantly called North America). Colin also works on food justice and haspublished and taught on food justice policy, pedagogy, and planning. As a teacher/scholar, he aims to catalyze peoples’ interest and drive to transform colonial, racist, patriarchal, heteronormative, able-ist systems. It is by organizing
around difference that just and sustainable food systems will arise. For Colin, the political and contested nature of food and agriculture are at the heart of his work.
The future of food is uncertain. But unless it's built on a foundation of equity and justice– for those that grow our food, medicines, energy, and materials– there won't be much of a future to have. That takes a reciprocity between eaters and growers, more-than-humans and humans, entangled in complex, unknowable relationships...
During the HWC Fellowship, Colin is working on the creation of an equity framework to move us towards decolonial, anti-oppressive future(s).
We'll toast to that.
In celebration of where healing and health collide and converse, we look towards wholeness and all the fragments along the way...
Veleda Roehl works as a dancer, educator, birthworker and yoga instructor. She apprentices under her mother Diana Roehl, a long time yoga teacher and teacher mentor, and obtained multiple certifications through Yoga Alliance. As a birthworker, she trained with DONA and as an apprentice under master Midwife Nonkululeko Tyehemba, Ibaye, and the Harlem Birth Action Committee. She teaches, studies and performs dances from her ancestors and dance traditions throughout the African Diaspora with Adia T. Whitaker’s Ase Dance Theatre Collective, choreographer nia love, and her own dance works. Veleda serves as a Creative Focus Group member for KHEPERU LLC/The 45 Degrees Project and is also a full-time dance teacher at a local public charter school. She's published and presented her research on the positive effects of dance and movement on the parent-child bond and dedicates her career to the study and benefits of movement for community and human development.
Veleda is a dedicated mother, wife, sister, aunt, daughter, niece and community based cultural worker who shares the blessings of life with her blended family- husband, performing artist and filmmaker Orion Gordon, and their amazing children, Lamine and Zinnia.
MARCH / EDUCATION
What we carry and how we carry it across our lives, across continents, and across perceptions is something that can be transmuted but not always codifed. This month's theme of education walks that beautiful line.
Aika Swai is a Tanzanian-American scholar specializing in African Literature and Cross Atlantic themes of decolonization. She is currently completing her PhD at the University of Cape Town (UCT), focusing on the communicability of supernatural, paranormal or so-called magical events in African and (Native) American literatures. Her research interests extend to themes of translatability, translanguaging and cultural transliteration in African and Caribbean literatures, the communicability of highly subjective experiences (such as the ones tied to race and gender), and the tension between ‘magic’ and ‘real’ when reading African, Caribbean or American First Nations literature through the lens of magical realism.
During the fellowship, Aika is working on her guest lecture catalog and upcoming website.
Check out Aika's website, completed during her fellowship.
Holes in the Wall Collective is an exempt organization as described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. All donations are tax deductible and extremely helpful.
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