NEW: Virtual Artist Salon launching March 24, 2022
Are you an immigrant artist or an artist who is a comrade to immigrant artists? We have 13 spots open for Virtual Artist Salons. Here's how to show interest.
ANNOUNCING: Virtual Artist Salons launching March 24, 2022
Rupy C. Tut, Jason Wyman, Kiana Honarmand, Han Qin, and Momos Cheeskos are thrilled to launch the new Virtual Artist Salons by & for Immigrant Artists & their comrades. This carefully crafted professional, creative, and personal development program is a unique opportunity for any Immigrant Artist of any discipline, age, or experience level and anywhere in the world, who desires a supportive community of fellow artists to deepen their understanding & expression of their art, craft, and story so that you are in control of your narrative.
The Virtual Artist Salons are a continuation of work convening immigrant, queer, and youth media artists across borders through virtual spaces that center mutual aid, care, and support to co-create pathways towards our liberation from systems of oppression & behaviors of domination. The space we hold collectively is one designed by immigrant artists with the aid & support of their comrades, so that we can (re)discover how our practices, cultures, movements, and dreams intersect & connect and how we might be able to cultivate larger networks of mutual aid, care, and support.
The Virtual Artist Salons started with Tea with Rupy & Jason, a way to convene our fellow immigrant artists & their comrades in conversation about belonging & home / not home. It grew because Kiana Honarmand, Han Qin, and Momos Cheeskos wanted to continue sharing Tea. It will grow because Tea, in all its complexity, is what bonds us.
Here is Rupy about why tea is so important:
What exactly are the Virtual Artist Salons?
The Virtual Artist Salons are 8 Sessions (every other Thursday from March 24 to June 30, 2022) that convene Immigrant Artists and artists who are their comrades across borders to cultivate connection & camaraderie through giving & receiving feedback about our art, stories, needs, and offerings.
Our 8 Sessions are:
Session 1 (3/24): Welcome & Culture Setting & Introductions
Sessions 2 (4/7) & 3 (4/21): Feedback on Works-in-Progress (3 artists present / session)
Sessions 4 (5/5) & 5 (5/19): Describe Your Art (3 artists present / session)
Sessions 6 (6/2) & 7 (6/16): Meeting Needs & Brainstorming Possibilities (3 artists present / session)
Session 8 (6/3): Dreams, Connections, & Emerging Actions
The times for all Virtual Artist Salons are 12pm to 2pm PT / 3pm to 5pm ET / 10pm to 12am CAT.
The breakdown of time is:
0:00 - Zoom Opens
0:10 - Salon Starts
1:45 - Salon Ends
2:00 - Zoom Closes
What do you mean by Immigrant Artist?
Immigrant artists encompasses first generation or second generation immigrants, artists creating work focused on immigrant issues & life, and artists who draw from the immigrant experience in their creative inquiries.
Comrades are artists who stand in solidarity with & alongside immigrant artists.
We prioritize Immigrant Artists and honor the contributions comrade artists bring.
What do the Virtual Artist Salons provide?
Virtual Artist Salons are collective efforts. While the space is co-created and co-hosted by Rupy C. Tut, Jason Wyman, Kiana Honarmand, Han Qin, and Momos Cheeskos, it is also tended to, cared for, and created by all artists who participate.
Based on our design of the Virtual Artist Salons we know that collectively we will provide:
a community of artists that want to know more about each other
tools that will help you articulate your art & creative process
dedicated space & time to focus on your self & your making
feedback & support that centers you and of which you control, so you can meet your need, wants, and desires
a professional development listing on your resume or CV
a glossary of terms that you will help co-create and that you can reference in future grant, residency, or fellowship applications
What do I need to do to participate?
The Virtual Artist Salons are a collective & volunteer-run effort. We have limited capacity to cultivate the Salons in a manner where all who participate also help co-create them. Thus, we have limited the number of spots available to 13.
To help us decide who will be a part of the Virtual Artist Salons we need the following from participants:
a commitment to attend all 8 sessions on 3/24, 4/7, 4/21, 5/5, 5/19, 6/2, 6/14, and 6/30
open communication when life happens & things come up (we know they will)
flexibility, so that we all can adapt & change & grow as needed both within & outside the Virtual Artist Salons
a desire to give & receive feedback & support & art & stories
dedication to camaraderie & to co-create across borders
Please note: This round of Virtual Artist Salons will be facilitated in English and requires a basic knowledge of the English language. We hope to be able to provide other language-specific Virtual Artist Salons in the future.
What is the exact timeline & decision-making process?
Please fill out the Virtual Artist Salons Interest Form before the end of the day Saturday, March 12, 2022.
Rupy, Jason, Kiana, Han, and Momos will be reviewing all fully completed Interest Forms and selecting the initial Virtual Artist Salons Participants to create as diverse a cohort as possible. We will be keeping in mind geographic location, artistic practice, commitment to camaraderie, age, cultural background, and experience level as some of factors when considering diversity. We are prioritizing Immigrant Artists first and then comrades.
Please note: This will be an imperfect process, and we are committed to continuing to develop future offerings like the Virtual Artist Salons as part of a larger Immigrant Artist Network that is still in development. We wish we could host more in this initial cohort, and we recognize the capacity we have.
We will let everyone know if they are in or are not in the initial cohort by March 17, 2022.
The first session begins on March 24, 2022 at 12pm PT / 3pm ET / 10pm CAT.
What have others said about the Virtual Artist Salons?
Han Qin, Rupy C. Tut, & Jason Wyman first collaborated as part of Rupy & Jason’s Virtual Artist Salon for the New York Foundation for the Arts’ Immigrant Artist Program in Fall of 2020. Rupy & Jason were already designing virtual supports for immigrant artists in the Fall of 2019, so when COVID hit, they were able to pivot and expand on their offerings by supporting a small cohort of immigrant artists in NYFA’s Immigrant Artist Program in presenting their art & story virtually. Through a series of storytelling & virtual presentation technique workshops, two-on-one coaching, and co-hosted event production, five artists presented new works via zoom to a wider audience and got an exhibition listing for the resume / CV even when galleries were closed.
Han happily joined Rupy & Jason for Tea in November 2021 when they first introduced the idea of a larger Immigrant Artist Network, including Virtual Artist Salons. Following up on Tea, Rupy & Jason asked if any attendants wanted to help us continue crafting the Immigrant Artist Network & our first offerings. Han quickly replied, “Yes!”
Han sees the power of the Immigrant Artist Network and our Virtual Artist Salons to shift the narrative of immigrant artists & immigrants & artists to ones held collectively rather than by institutions or systems. As Han so eloquently puts it,
“We, as immigrants, desire to feel included. And we tend to be muted & treated like we’re invisible. United as a group, our stories can be heard & our creativities seen. These rich nutrients feed our hearts & minds, and bond us culturally to our ancestors, enhancing our contributions to global citizenship.”
What is Our Dream for Our Immigrant Artist Network?
The Virtual Artist Salons are part of a dream for a much larger Immigrant Artist Network.
We dream of a distributive, mutual, interdisciplinary, creative development & exhibition-producing network of immigrant & comrade artists that:
fosters camaraderie among immigrant artists to ease their isolation,
facilitates the process of giving & receiving meaningful feedback,
encourages mutual sharing of needs, wants, desires, skills, talents, & offerings
reaffirms the power of immigrant artists telling & sharing their narratives & art on their own terms.
This dream is cultivated through a collective effort that includes many relations beyond just those involved in the Virtual Artist Salons.
Who all has helped make the Virtual Artist Salons possible?
The Virtual Artist Salons would not be possible without the support of those who have held circles before us, which include a long legacy of healers, artists, storytellers, elders, and ancestors.
Specifically, the methodology underneath the Virtual Artist Salons was developed by Jason Wyman in partnership with immigrant, queer, trans, rural, and poor artists, educators, and youth workers of all ages, practices, cultures, and identities over the course of six years (and counting). From 2016 to 2020, Wyman co-lead the Alliance Youth Media Program, which was an intergenerational, cross-territorial network of youth media artists & practitioners co-creating systems of mutual care, aid, support, and development virtually.
The application of this methodology to this particular Virtual Artist Salons series was spearheaded by Rupy C. Tut & Jason Wyman as part of their development of an Immigrant Artist Network, which was begun in Fall 2021.
The Immigrant Artist Network is a program of Queering Dreams, which was co-founded by Crystal Mason & Jason Wyman, also in Fall 2021. Queering Dreams praxis is a culturally-specific application of elements of Wyman’s & Mason’s creative praxis.
Queering Dreams is fiscally sponsored by Independent Arts & Media, which allows Queering Dreams to accept donations on behalf of all of its programs, including the Immigrant Artist Network and its Virtual Artist Salons.