Our mission is to create and build shared spaces for creative and cultural experiences through storytelling and community building.
Watch March 2018 this is my body
Chloe peaked at age nine, when she managed to eat 17 lobsters in one sitting at an all-you-can-eat buffet in Reno. Since then, she’s tried to outdo that achievement by studying statistics, computer science, and Spanish at UC Berkeley, and now spends her days writing code, fighting for diversity and inclusion, and generally thinking about how to help make people more and the world more fair. In her free time, she enjoys swing dancing and casually wearing secondhand wedding dresses, though she has yet to do both simultaneously. She eats much less seafood now.
Cristal Harris is an aspiring writer, poet, and artist. She began her creativity in high school where she was awarded for her painting and poetry. Cristal went on to community college where she changed emphasis and turned away from the arts. She then transferred to UCLA where she graduated with a BA and went on to USF for law school. Cristal is a queer person who seeks to use her voice and creativity to give attention to the existence and plight of queer black people. She hopes that today begins a lifetime of work in the arts.
My name is Deepa. I was born and raised in Little Rock, Arkansas and recently moved back to the Bay Area to work in health policy research. I am passionate about public health and studying human behavior, and I want to do whatever I can in the form of policy and social reform and art to contribute to building a society that values people and the human experience.
I am inspired by hearing the stories and lived experiences of people in my community, by good music and honest art, and by the motivated and passionate energy of the people around me. I am lucky enough to be constantly inspired by my close friends and family and in the work that I get to do. I love a good comedy set, a solid yoga class, and early morning runs on the beach. I'm super excited to learn as much as I can about storytelling, writing, and performance and am so pumped to meet everyone in this community.
Elyse grew up in Columbia, Maryland. She spent most of her adolescence pursuing the performing arts, journalism, and cross-cultural activities. She graduated from The George Washington University with a Bachelor of Arts in International Affairs, where she cultivated a passion for women's empowerment and leadership worldwide. Elyse now lives in Redwood City, where she works at an education non-profit. She spends her free time journaling, reading, community-building, and awakening her inner outdoorswoman.
Olivia Kingsley - Mentor
Olivia Kingsley willingly bruises her arms and elbows in the name of art. As a founding member of the San Francisco Neo-Futurists, she's written and performed for audiences around the Bay, Los Angeles, New York, and some cities in Australia only Australians know about. You can find her online @oliviakingsley and some slices of her work at olivia-kingsley.com.
Paige Mayes is an actress, dancer and a singer originally from Denver, CO. Paige graduated from Arizona State University where she received her Bachelors in dance. She also attended the American Conservatory Theater, where she did the Summer Training Congress and the SF Semester. She is beyond thankful to be here in the Bay area for 3 years now, and prays to go beyond what she can exceed.
Originally from the PNW, Shannon went to college in Southern California, and then moved up to the Bay Area to work as a Software Engineer, but decided she needed a break from the tech world and wanted to do something she's more passionate about and is more impact-oriented. It was in this time that she performed for This is my body, and Shannon has since moved up to Seattle. She's currently finding herself, getting used to living in a place that's cold, and doing contract project management work. Shannon loves live music, solving puzzles, and laughing.
My name is Vivi and I'm from a Vietnamese diasporic community in Southern California aptly dubbed "Little Saigon" (I firmly believe this is one of the world's most miraculous food cities of our time!). Once I turned 18, I moved all over the state and made money doing everything from hustling for tips in a bikini to coordinating real estate investment transactions. I recently settled in Oakland after graduating from UC Berkeley with a BA in Philosophy, and since then, have been trying to figure out what it means to live a good life. While I'm still feeling that out, I'm also exploring my long-term goal of resolving systemic issues in the U.S.' public education system through my work in education policy research. Outside of my 9-5, I keep myself out of my head space by writing short lines of prose, cooking and baking, and having friends over for dinner and conversation.
Lyvonne “Proverbs” Picou - Mentor
Proverbs, a New York City native, is a preacher, poet, educator, and creative social entrepreneur. As an orator and Emmy-award-winning media producer, she harnesses the power of narrative in order to bring about social transformation. She is committed to fostering journeys of healing, wholeness, and wellness for Black women survivors of male sexual violence.
Proverbs has been featured on radio and at events around the country, including Mouth Off (Oakland, CA), the We Got Next Movement (Boston, MA), Jus Words (Philadelphia, PA), and Java Monkey (Decatur, GA). She has been fortunate enough to share the stage with recording artist Ryan Leslie and spoken word luminaries such as Taalam Acey, Lamar Hill, Jamaal St. John, and many others.
She graduated from Seton Hall University with a Bachelor of Arts in English Honors, Yale Divinity School with a Master of Divinity, and Columbia Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology, where she completed her thesis about preaching, poetry, and sexual trauma. She currently resides in Oakland, CA with her husband, Brandon, and can be found on Facebook, YouTube, and Snapchat (@ProverbsthePoet) as well as Twitter and Instagram (@LyvonneP).