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 MEET THE 2018 BRIO AWARD WINNERS

Seyi Adebanjo | Documentary

Seyi Adebanjo is a Queer gender-non-conforming Nigerian MFA artist. Seyi’s work is the intersection of art, media, imagination, ritual, and politics. Seyi is on the faculty of New York University’s Tisch - Open Arts. Seyi was recently awarded 1 of the 8 Exciting Filmmakers Shaking Up Hollywood by IndieWire.  Seyi has been an artist in resident with Allgo. Seyi has exhibited at the Longwood Art Gallery & the Leslie-Lohman Museum.  Seyi is currently a fellow with AIM at the Bronx Museum and has been a fellow with The Laundromat Project, Queer/Art/Mentorship, Maysles Institute, & IFP. Trans Lives Matter! Justice for Islan Nettles has screened on PBS Channel 13 and continues to screen globally.  The documentary Ọya: Something Happened On The Way To West Africa!  is screening globally and on a speaking tour.

 

 

Afua Ansong | Poetry

Afua Ansong is a Ghanaian American artist who writes poetry and teaches contemporary and traditional West African dance. A 2015 BRIO (Bronx Recognizes its Own) recipient and a 2017 Callaloo Fellow, she writes about the challenges of the African woman immigrant in the United States, exploring themes of transition, citizenship, and identity. She is currently working on a mixed genre project that explores 60 Adinkra symbols mythicized to have been created by King Gyaman Adinkra of Ivory Coast who was captured by the Asantes of Ghana. Her work can be seen or is forthcoming in The Rumpus, FOLIO, TAB, The Seventh Wave, PUBLIC POOL, Vinyl, Maine Review, joINT, Frontier & elsewhere.

   

Heather A. Archibald | Fiction

Heather A. Archibald migrated from St. Kitts to New York, where she studied English at Lehman College, earning her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. She has taught English at colleges both in New York and St. Kitts. In 2000, Heather published her first collection of poems entitled Pregnant These Past Twenty Years. Her poems have been published in a number of journals, including The Caribbean Writer (UVI) (2015, 2016, 2017), Mom Egg Review (2016) and A River of Stories (2015) in which she represented St. Kitts and Nevis. She is also a Callaloo fellow. Her second collection of poems, Home-Home, was published in the summer of 2016. Heather participated as an instructor in the Interactive Poetry Workshop, collaborating with Women Writers in Bloom Poetry Salon at the CCNY Department of Continuing and Professional Studies. She completed her MFA degree in Creative Writing with a thesis in fiction from CCNY(Spring 2017)."

   

Philip Bell | Photography

Philip Bell is a photographer and filmmaker whose aesthetic is strongly rooted in his visual arts background. He studied Computer Art before transitioning into photography and filmmaking. His first film, J'ouvert, about the often misunderstood celebration that kicks off Brooklyn's Carnival festivities, was an official selection at the Margaret Mead Film Festival, Brooklyn Film Festival, and New Orleans Film Festival. Based out of The Bronx, Philip works as a freelancer engaged in a variety of short and long-term projects.      

   

Becky Brown | Mixed Media 2D

Becky Brown was born in Manhattan, moved to Brooklyn and currently lives in the Bronx.  She works between painting, drawing, sculpture, and installation using found images, objects, and texts.  Diverse materials inform her practice, including pre-modern poetic forms, discarded appliances, architectural theory and current photo-journalism.  Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally at venues including The Drawing Center, NYC; Project: ARTspace, NYC; NARS Foundation, Brooklyn, NY; Fort Gondo Complex for the Arts, St. Louis, MO; and Religare Arts Initiative, Delhi, India.  She has been an artist-in-residence at Yaddo, Saltonstall Foundation, and the Edward Albee Foundation, among others.  Her art criticism has been published in Art in America and The Brooklyn Rail.  She was the 2016-17 Visiting Resident Artist at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and received her MFA from Hunter College and her BA from Brown University.               

   

Paco Cao | Mixed Media 3D

Born in Spain, 1965; Francisco Cao Gutiérrez A.K.A. Paco Cao has resided in New York since 1995. Paco Cao is unfaithful to any particular medium. Employing a wide range of disciplines and materials, his work establishes a strong relationship between art, audience, and context as it challenges the boundaries between high and low culture. His projects often evolve over long periods of time, crossing geographic and cultural borders. His work has been shown at and/or made in collaboration with MoMA, Metropolitan Museum of Art, El Museo del Barrio, The New Museum, and Creative Time, New York; The National Gallery (Rome), El Prado Museum (Madrid), The Reina Sofía Museum (Madrid), Mercosul Biennale (Porto Alegre, Brazil), Carrillo Gil Museum (Mexico City), MART (Rovereto, Italy), and BOZAR (Brussels). He is the author of several books and the director of the film Dance Poison. Cao holds a Ph.D. in Art History from the University of Oviedo, Spain."

   

Dominic Colon | Screenwriting

Actor, writer, director, and producer, Dominic is most recognized for his work on The Electric Company. Dominic has appeared in over 50 films and TV shows, including guest appearances on POWER, THE BLACKLIST, ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK. In 2018 Dominic will appear alongside Benicio Del Toro and Patricia Arquette in the SHOWTIME limited series ESCAPE AT DANNEMORA, directed by Ben Stiller. Dominic is 2-time BRIO Award winner having won in for playwriting in 2011 for his play CRUSH. The screenplay for CRUSH won the 2011 HBO/New York International Film Festival Short Film Script Competition.  Dominic’s second film SKIN, a comedy about a man who, after extreme weight loss, is afraid to have sex with his boyfriend without a shirt, won the 2016 BRIO Award for Screenwriting. SKIN recently premiered at the HBO New York Latino Film Festival and NYC and is currently on the film festival circuit."

   

Josué  Colon-Rosado | Sculpture

Josué Guarionex took his first steps in artistic creation alongside his family: his mother is a fashion designer and his father a woodworker. He studied Civil Engineering at the UPR in Ponce. In 1996, he studied Visual Art at the Universidad de Sagrado Corazón. During this period, he was recommended to serve as the assistant of renowned photographer Jack Delano. In Puerto Rico, Guarionex also assisted several photographers in charge of advertising campaigns, underwater and commercial photography.  After moving to NYC, he began an audiovisual project dedicated to the documentation of Afro-Puerto Rican music. His first exhibition of sculptures, Rollingpin=Espacios Ideales, took place at the Guatíbiri Gallery (2009), PR. His work has also been exhibited El Museo de las Américas, PR, Dominico-Americano Cultural Center, RD; Palacio de Bellas Artes, RD. In New York; Bronx Art Space, Bronx Museum of the Arts, Andrew Freedman Home, Clemente Soto Velez Cultural Center      

   

Belinda Gallegos | Photography

Belinda Gallegos is a photographer born and raised in Mexico. She graduated from Universidad Autonoma de Tamaulipas with a BA in Communications. At an early age, she was exposed to photography by her father who was fond of taking family photos. When she first arrived in NY she attended workshops at the International Center of Photography. Documentary, Visual Journalism and Portrait photography were her main areas of study. Between 2000 and 2017 she worked for a labor union magazine in New York City. Her photography work received the Metro NY Labor Communications Council award several times. Gallegos taught photography to union members and has been part of photo group exhibits. She recently became a member of the Bronx Photo League at the Bronx Documentary Center. Gallegos is currently working on a long-term project that depicts the everyday life of her building's neighbors. She has been a Bronx resident since 2007.           
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Lauren Gohara | Painting

Lauren Gohara’s work has been in numerous exhibitions, including most recently at Cluster Gallery and BWAC Gallery in Brooklyn, The Windows at Kimmel Galleries at New York University, and the Cohen Library Archives Gallery (New York, NY). She has had solo exhibitions of her work at Metaphor Gallery in Brooklyn, and at the New Arts Program and Northampton Community College, both in Pennsylvania. She has been a recipient of the Elizabeth Foundation Studio Program Award from 1999-2018. Her work is in numerous private collections, as well as in the collection of the U.S. State Department, which acquired a group of 22 paintings for the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria. Gohara received her BFA from Art Center College of Design, and her MFA from Hunter College. She studied painting for an additional year at the Frank Mohr Institute in The Netherlands. She lives and works in New York City.        

   

Kayla Hamilton | Dance

Kayla Hamilton resides in the Bronx, NY where she is a member of the 2017 Bessie Award-winning cast of the Skeleton Architecture, the future of our world's curated by Eva Yaa Asantewaa. In addition to working with Skeleton Architecture, she dances with Sydnie L. Mosley Dances and Gesel Mason Performance Projects. Under the name K. Hamilton Projects, Kayla produces performance work, organizes community events and writes arts-integrated curriculum. When Kayla is not dancing, she is teaching eighth-grade social studies in the Highbridge neighborhood of the Bronx

   

Shelley Haven | Painting

Shelley Haven is a LES-born, Bronx-based visual artist working in paint, drawing, printmaking and sculptural mediums. A nature enthusiast, she draws and paints, hikes and bicycles, meditates and gardens outdoors. She creates nature-inspired artworks and investigates the awe-inspiring beauty and power as well as the fragility and vulnerability of our environment. She strives to inspire others to become present and engaged in nature, to be healed and strengthened there, to advocate for the preservation and expansion of our protected environment. She extends her studio practice by engaging in collaborative projects. Her contributions as the founding designer and cover artist for And Then, a literary and arts print publication, supports an arena for dialogue among a diverse professional and non-professional creative community. Recent international YouTube collaborations bring her art together with contemporary composers/musicians and writers in the digital world. She is also an artist-educator devoted to teaching in community and university settings."         

   

Jasmine Hearn | Choreography

Jasmine Hearn is a Bronx-based choreographer, performer, and dancer. Born and raised in Houston, TX, she graduated from Point Park University with her B.A. in Dance. Jasmine travels around the world to share her choreographic work and participate in multidisciplinary collaborations. A 2017 "Bessie" Award winner as a part of the ensemble, the Skeleton Architecture, she currently collaborates with Alisha B. Wormsley and Tara Aisha Willis and is a company member with David Dorfman Dance

   

Matthew Jefferson | Vocal Music Performance

Matthew Jefferson, A.K.A., Kemba was once described by The Fader as "The Lion-Hearted rapper who doesn't give up," which might actually be an understatement. The Bronx native has overcome two benign tumors and facial reconstruction surgery while growing up as the middle child of a single mother who worked multiple jobs and put herself through college to provide for her sons. Kemba's lightheartedly witty approach to weighty sociopolitical topics has earned him critical acclaim and a rare Kendrick Lamar co-sign, and last summer's Negus album has been streamed over 3 million times. Kemba's next album grapples with a turbulent 2017 which gave him his first nationwide tour and an opportunity to perform alongside Portugal. The Man and Ghostface Killah but also gave him tragedy when his mother passed away in February.

   

Deborah Kahan Kolb | Poetry

Deborah Kahan Kolb is a native New Yorker currently living in Riverdale, Bronx. Much of her poetry is informed by the unique experiences and challenges of growing up in, and ultimately leaving, the insular world of Hasidic Judaism. Deborah earned her BA and MA degrees in English/Creative Writing from CUNY Queens College, where she served as editor of the Journal of Jewish Studies and was the recipient of numerous writing prizes. She earned her MS in School Administration and Supervision from Touro College, after which she served as principal of a private school for disadvantaged children of Central Asian descent. Deborah’s work has recently appeared in Mom Egg, New Verse News, Rise Up, Writers Resist, 3Elements Review, Poets Reading the News, Tuck, Literary Mama, and Paddock Review. Her debut poetry collection, Windows and a Looking Glass (Finishing Line Press 2017) was a finalist for the New Women’s Voices Chapbook Competition."

   

James Lahti | Music Composition

James Lahti makes his home in the Bronx as a composer, pianist, and conductor. He received his musical training in California, then at the Manhattan School of Music and the New School. Awarded a grant from the New York Council on the Arts/Meet The Composer, Jim has written extensively for various chamber music ensembles as well as art songs, orchestral music, musicals, and operas.  He was a resident pianist for 7 years with The OMNI Ensemble and produced a CD of his work with them. He has also worked in the theatre as a conductor, music director, and vocal coach.  Jim has been involved as co-producer, music director, and arranger for a number of concerts benefiting charities.  Jim's recent commissions include a chamber transcription of Canteloube’s Chants d’Auvergnes. He is excited about his current project – a concert dedicated to his new song cycle, scheduled for June 2018 at Symphony Space.


   

Annie Legnini | Mixed Media 2D

Annie Legnini is a 24 year old artist born and raised in the Bronx.  She graduated from Fordham University in 2016 with a BA in Visual Arts and Women's Studies.  Annie is the creator of Bronx Faces - a collaborative community art project that pairs the stories and experiences of Bronx natives with a mixed media painted portrait.

   

Hannah Leshaw | Screenwriting

Hannah Leshaw is a Bronx-based writer and director. Her first three short films, partially funded by the Bronx Council on the Arts, screened internationally at film festivals including the Female Eye, Big Apple, FLICKERS, and BendFilm. She is currently in development for her first feature "Amara, 15," about a 15-year-old Bronx teenager struggling to escape her father's sexual abuse without leaving her two little sisters behind. The project placed in the top 6% of the 201 7 Academy Nicholl Fellowships in screenwriting and is currently in the Second Round of the 2018 Sundance Screenwriters Lab. Hannah was also a finalist for the 2017 Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE) Writers Room Fellowship based on her pilot for an original scripted series, "Where You'll Keep Me." Hannah is the co-founder of The Bronx Filmmakers Collective and a member of Cinefemme, a collective of female directors.

   

Thahitun Mariam | Poetry

Thahitun Mariam is a poet, writer, activist and community organizer. Brought up in a rural village in Bangladesh for the first six years of her life, then settling in a working-class community in the Bronx has been pivotal to understanding the inspiration behind her creative work. From her immigrant background, she delves into topics of displacement, identity formation, migration and social justice. She is a 2017 recipient of the Immigrant Artist Mentoring Program: Literary and Performing Arts with New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), a founding member of the South Asian Diaspora Artists Collective (SADAC) and a former Advisory Board Member for BxArts Factory. Her poem "Balady: Love of One's Country" was featured on Global Citizen's Women Poets series for April 2017 National Poetry Month. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations from St. Lawrence University."

   

Ira Meritt | Photography

Ira Meritt has been native Bronx resident for 67 years, married with two grown children. He is recently retired from teaching photography for 33 years, the last 24 at the High School of Art & Design in Manhattan. Along with his teaching duties Ira built up the schools’ internship program to be one of the most successful high school internship programs in New York City.  Before teaching, he worked as a freelance photographer associate at the Dena Photography Agency in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s and as a videographer for the Health and Nursing Program at Lehman College in the Bronx.  He is presently a member of the Bronx Photographers Collaboration which is documenting the neighborhoods of the Bronx        

   

Paula Nadelstern | Craft

Paula Nadelstern lives and makes her quilts on the same block in the Bronx where she was born. She has achieved international recognition for her innovative and complex designs inspired by the bilateral symmetry of kaleidoscopic images. Analyzing not only what a scope is but also what it isn't has steered her in lots of valuable directions. Employing a technique that is counterintuitive to the conventional quilt process, Nadelstern obscures the seams that join pieces of fabric. The fluid effect injects a feeling of motion into an otherwise static image. Honored by inclusion in the Twentieth Century’s 100 Best American Quilts, her designs were showcased in the American Folk Art Museum’s first one-person exhibition highlighting the work of a contemporary quilt artist (2009). In the truest tradition of American quiltmaking, Nadelstern shares her imagination, techniques, and talent through workshops and publications. She designs quiltmaking fabrics for Benartex, Inc."           

   

Christina Olivares | Non-Fiction

Christina Olivares is the author of No Map of the Earth Includes Stars (2015), winner of the 2014 Marsh Hawk Press Book Prize, and of the chaplet Interrupt (2015), published by Belladonna* Collaborative. Her chapbook DSM/Partial Manual is forthcoming. Her interviews and essays have been anthologized in books and published in journals. She is the recipient of two Jerome Foundation Travel and Study Grants (2014 and 2010), and she has participated in the CantoMundo (fellow), VONA, Frost Place (fellow), and Bread Loaf Writers Conferences. She is the recipient of a 2015-2016 LMCC Residency. She is a 2016, 2017, and 2018 AWP panelist. She was a visiting faculty member in the Rutgers-Newark poetry MFA program. Olivares is a queer Cuban-American writer and educator from the Bronx in New York City. She earned an MFA from CUNY Brooklyn College in Poetry. She moves with Black Lives Matter and works towards poverty abolition.

   

Devon Rodriguez | Painting

Devon Rodriguez was born and raised in the South Bronx, New York City. Rodriguez is best known for his highly detailed figures of contemporary urban life. Rodriguez studied painting with James Harrington at the high school of Art & Design. While there, he absorbed prodigious attention from working artists and collectors and displayed a painting at the Met at 17. Through his work, Rodriguez strives to express his fascination with contemporary urban life. He paints people, studying the gestures, facial expressions, and mannerisms that reveal their psyches. He observes his surroundings and paints what impresses him most. His goal is to instill in the viewer a sense of empathy for the subject. His work can be found in a myriad of private art collections around the US. His work has been included in various publications such as the New York Times, the New Yorker, the Artist's magazine, and Southwest Art Magazine.            

   

Bonafide Rojas | Poetry
Bonafide Rojas has been a poet for over two decades. No one in his family is an artist. He was raised by his mother & was encouraged to take the conventional road, never to be a poet or musician, Yet, he dropped out of school, quit most of his jobs & never been married. He’s forty years old & has a teenager who thinks that being a poet is cool. He feels he’s at an intersection. Should he quit writing & get a full-time job, health benefits & 401K? Writing is not a leisure pursuit but a constant reinvention of self, a tool he’s used to repair everything. It’s important for him to know that writing is capable of healing. So when his son says “I think it’s cool you’re a poet,” he knows he needs to continue down this path because children rarely ever think their father is cool.

   

Rebecca Rouss – Vocal Music Performance

Rebecca Rouss is a simple human being who is a literature enthusiast. A simple human being who loves melodies and music. A simple human being who lives with a compelling need to create simple substantial gestures of thought; generated from text...through melodies and music. She is also an educator (K-5) via a Bronx community-based program that services inner city youth (M.M.C.C), a volunteer servicing the NYC Public School youth in the Bronx (P.S. 160, P.S.144), and Youth Chair for the Co-0p City NAACP Branch. She holds an Associate of Science degree from Monroe College Bronx, NY. "Life has definitely made me have to choose between food and a home or going back to school. No excuse but this is the reality.”
   

Stefani Saintonge | Narrative Film/Video

A Haitian-American filmmaker and educator, in 2014 Stefani Saintonge won the ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood Discovery Award for her short film, Seventh Grade. Her documentary, La Tierra de los Adioses, won Best Latin American Short Documentary at the Festival Internacional de Cine en el Desierto. Her work, which focuses on women, youth, and immigration, has screened at several festivals in the US and abroad. A member of New Negress Film Society, she is a recipient of the Jerome Foundation Film and Video Grant and works as an educator and adjunct professor in New York. She holds an MFA in Documentary Film Studies and Production.

   

Joshunda Sanders | Fiction

Joshunda Sanders writes fiction, journalism, poetry, and essays. She was the receipt of a 2017 Hedgebrook Writing Residency and a Young Women Empowered Teaching Artist. She has presented and lectured on college campuses across the country including at Princeton, Bard and as an adjunct at the University of Texas at Austin. Her work has appeared in the Bellevue Literary Review, Salon, Publishers Weekly, The Week, Bitch Magazine, Gawker, Kirkus Reviews and many other outlets. Her books include Single & Happy: The Party of Ones, How Racism and Sexism Killed Traditional Media: Why the Future of Journalism Depends on Women and People of Color, the novella All City, and The Beautiful Darkness: A Handbook for Orphans. She served as Principal Deputy Press Secretary at the Department of Energy during the Obama Administration. Starting in Fall 2018, she will teach a class in The New School’s First-Year Writing program. She lives in the Bronx. 

   

Alicia Anabel Santos | Fiction

Alicia Anabel Santos is a Producer, Playwright, Speaker, Activist, Teaching Artist, Afrolatina Storyteller, and Priestess. She was born in Brooklyn and is a proud Dominican Writer. She is the Founder of the New York City Latina Writers Group. For eleven years she has created and nurtured safe spaces for emerging and established writers. She has been a guest speaker, traveling to more than thirty universities throughout the United States, lecturing on subjects which intersect identity, religion, sexuality, feminism and social justice. In 2011, she self-published her memoir, Finding Your Force: A Journey to Love. Anabel has been a guest on NPR's Tell Me More and her work has been seen in LATINA Magazine. In 2008 she joined Creador Pictures as Writer/Producer of its first documentary, AfroLatinos: An Untaught History. She attended New York University, has a daughter in graduate school and lives in the Bronx with her partner.

   

Hrvoje Slovenc | Photography

Hrvoje Slovenc  (b. Zagreb, Croatia, 1976) is a Croatian photographer based in New York. He holds an MFA in Photography from Yale University School of Art and MS in Biochemistry from University of Zagreb, Croatia. Selected exhibitions include Traversing the Past, Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago; Biennial, the Bronx Museum of the Arts; Past is Now, Münchner Stadt Museum in Munich, Germany; Marble Hill, Museum of Contemporary Art in Zagreb, Croatia; New Media, Sex, and Culture in the 21st Century, Museum of New Art in Detroit; New Acquisitions 2003-2013, Museum of Arts and Crafts in Zagreb, Croatia; and Young Artists' Biennial in Bucharest, Romania. His work is in the permanent collections of Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, as well as Museum of Contemporary Art and Museum of Arts and Crafts in Zagreb, Croatia.             

   

Erik Spink | Documentary Film

Erik Spink is a director/producer at Vacant Light a film and media production company based in New York City. He is a lifelong resident of the Bronx. He earned his Bachelors of Arts in Cinema Studies at SUNY Purchase College and an MFA in Social Documentary Film from the School of Visual Arts. Erik’s work in film, television, and digital media has been focused predominately on non-fiction storytelling. Additionally, Erik has worked with brands and non-profit organizations creating original moving image projects across all platforms.  Erik was the producer of Amitabh Joshi’s feature-length documentary film Tashi’s Turbine, which aired on PBS’s WORLD Channel in 2016. In 2017, Erik was nominated for Impact Partners’ Emerging Producers Fellowship. Erik serves on the faculty in the MFA for Social Documentary Film department at The School of Visual Arts.

   

Dianne Sposito’s | Playwriting

Produced throughout the USA, playwright Dianne Sposito’s works include: Commedia Paradia, Harbledown, Heaven in Your Pocket (official selection of the 2008 NYMF), Almost Full Circle at the Guggenheim, When There’s a Will, They're Away!, What’ll the Neighbors Think?, Love at the Louvre, Hell’s Kitchen, Dream of a Play and Suddenly, Lasagna!, which received the BCA 2011 BRIO Award for Playwriting.  Ms. Sposito has been a guest playwright at LAByrinth Theatre Company’s Intensive Ensemble presenting Officials of the Stardust Mission.  World premieres: Cinderella (love what you wish for), and The Sleeping Beauty (a light within) co-written with Mark Boergers.  Monologues published by Smith & Kraus, and poetry and essays published in Visible Ink, a literary journal for cancer survivors.  She is the recipient of writing grants and awards and is a member of The Dramatists Guild of America, Inc.

   

Jennifer Tomaiolo | Painting

Jennifer Tomaiolo earned a BFA from the School of Visual Arts in NY, an MFA from Brooklyn College and an AS in Chemistry from NYC College of Technology.  From her studio in the Bronx, she studies and experiments with the interposition of patterns, figurative forms, and the landscape; natural rhythms that have been perceived and explored by artists in cultural patterns throughout art history. She is particularly interested in Greek, Roman and Islamic mosaic and tile work, visiting archeological sites and museums in Greece, Cyprus, Turkey, Italy, Spain, and Morocco so far, with plans to visit more. She researches and engages with the iconography of art history with an emphasis on the role of women, piecing together a story that is not in the written record, a story that has been downplayed and distorted, but of which traces remain in imagery.      

   

C-Rayz Walz | Vocal Music Performance

"The charismatic NYC-mainstay Mc C-RAYZ WALZ is lauded as the most versatile and dexterous freestyle MC on The Planet." “I Had a lot of time to focus on my bars & re-evaluate myself in every aspect of my existence to the point where I am Uplifting Humanity w/ every Song" –Walz. C-Rayz Walz hosts many hip-hop shows and events, and has appeared in projects globally. C-Rayz Walz considers energy an art unto itself. This Bronx-bred emcee is a lyrical magician on stage, freestyling in the studio, and everywhere you turn these days. C-Rayz Walz has shared the stage with the likes of dead prez, Mos Def, De La Soul, Doug E Fresh, Pete Rock, X-Clan, GrandMaster Caz, Mellie Mel, Cold Crush, and Busy Bee. C-Rayz Walz is about new music, new energy & new chances to do great things in the culture he lives for representing pure hip hop from The Bronx."

   

Cinnamon Willis | Sculpture

Cinnamon Willis was born in Brooklyn New York and is a graduate of the New York College of Technology where she obtained an associate in art and advertising, and a bachelor's degree in communication design. She has previously worked as a graphic designer, production designer and also as an art director. For the past ten years, Cinnamon has been working on her painting, photography, sculpting and branching out into installation art. In 2013, an installation piece that she created received a gold "Best in Show" award at the Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition Gallery. After participating in numerous exhibitions in New York City, Canada, and New Orleans, her most notable was her two-person show at the ISE Cultural Foundation in SoHo featuring her figurative sculptures. Cinnamon now lives and works in the Morrisania section of the Bronx, see her work at www.melandolly.com.  

   

Tammy Wofsey | Printmaking

Tammy Wofsey is a visual artist with a focus in printmaking and book arts. She has established her publishing press and printmaking studio in the Mott Haven section of the South Bronx called Plotzing Press. She grew up in Colorado. The horizon of mountains seen from any direction, lack of water due to the desert-like climate, and limited oxygen from high altitudes influenced her interest in our bodies relationship to the natural world which eventually found its way into her studio practice.  After graduation, she worked at Bob Blackburn’s Printmaking Workshop, an NYC based community collective for printmakers where she honed her craft and made friends with the same passion. She would describe her visual language as a series of reworked mistakes where imagery is constantly re-imagined and reprinted to create a visual solution. Her printing process always originates from drawings taken from dog-eared spiral sketchbooks.        

   
   
   

FOR MORE INFORMATION
email bryan@bronxarts.org


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2018 BRIO Award Winners

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This program is made possible with public funds from the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs; NYS Council on the Arts; the Lambent Foundation; the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Inc.; Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture; the Bronx Delegation of the NYC Council - including Council Member James Vacca, Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Council Member Rafael Salamanca Jr., and Council Members Fernando Cabrera and Andrew Cohen.

 

 
 
 
 

 

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