Resistance, Roots, & Truth: An ICA Alum Group Exhibition
Resistance, Roots, & Truth: An ICA Alumni Group Exhibition

Resistance, Roots, & Truth: An ICA Alumni Group Exhibition

On View: July 19, 2018 - September 6, 2018

RESISTANCE, ROOTS, AND TRUTH - is an alumni exhibition which showcases the work of emerging visual artists, facilitators, and performers who have completed the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute (CCCADI), Innovative Cultural Advocacy Fellowship (ICA). Curated and organized by ICA alumni Yelaine Rodriguez, and Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez. Each participant is an ICA alum. The Innovative Cultural Advocacy Fellowship (ICA) provides a platform for emerging to mid-career arts professionals from under-represented communities. Thus far, over 100 artists,
educators, art administrators, and arts activists have participated in the program. 

We are honored to present the various talents of 11 ICA Alumni. Each piece celebrates and acknowledges the shared vision with the center since art is one of our most powerful tools of resistance. This exhibition features various art medium by visual and non-visual artists, in an effort to celebrate the common ground shared amongst the alumni and institution. Although some stories may overlap, or share a common theme, the difference in each artist’s story is captured and acknowledged to demonstrate each person’s truth as it applies to them.

Co-curated by ICA Alum Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez & Yelaine Rodriguez.


Ariana Faye Allensworth, David Rios Ferreira, Gerald Leavell II, Haydil Henriquez, Joselina Fay, Mirland Terlonge, Nadia Williams, Stephanie Cunningham, Vanezza Cruz, Vanessa López, and Zeelie Brown.

Meet the Curators




Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez :

Caribbean New Yorker, Father, Atheist on some days, Non Theist Agnostic on others, Apostate, Leftist, Socialist, Agitator, Occasional Contrarian, Ethical Polyamorist, HS dropout, GED holder, Autodidact, Educator, Debater, white people fearing, all people loving, Marijuana Advocating, Hip Hop, Sneaker, comic and sci-fi loving non Latino/a/x identifying Dominican Puerto Rican Interdisciplinary Artist born on a military base in North Carolina in 1976. Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez a.k.a FEEGZ, Figaro & Firo173 has taught and spoken in dozens of institutions nationally and internationally, He has exhibited at El Museo del Barrio, Studio Museum in Harlem and Centro Leon Museum among many others. Washington Heights NYC since 1984.

“My work conveys my anxiety and thrill regarding history, how that history manifests in the present, and presentʼs implications for the future. "


Yelaine Rodriguez:

Afro Dominican-American Artist, Educator, and Independent Curator. Founder of  La Lucha: Dominican Republic & Haiti: One Island, an artist-based organization that brings Dominican and Haitian artist together. Since its inauguration in 2014, La Lucha has created safe artistic spaces by holding various artist talks, and exhibitions throughout the city with emerging and established artists of the Dominican and Haitian Diaspora. Rodriguez graduated with a BFA in Fashion Design from Parsons the New School of Design in 2013, where she was awarded a scholarship to study Photojournalism in Paris, and Fashion Design at Central St. Martins London.

Rodriguez is the recipient of the Van Lier Fellowship at Wave Hill 2018 and a Fellow from the Caribbean Cultural Center of the African Diaspora 2017. Her work has been included at BRAC, The Andrew Freedman Home, American Museum of Natural History, Rush Art Gallery, The Clemente Gallery, as well at El Centro Cultural de España in the Dominican Republic. She has taught at Altos de Chavón School of Design in La Romana, D.R. and currently teaches at Parsons the New School of Design in NY.

Meet the Artists 


Ariana Faye Allensworth:

Ariana Faye Allensworth is social worker, cultural producer, educator, and photographer based in Brooklyn, NY.

Since 2009, Ariana has worked in museum, school, and community-based settings, specializing in social justice pedagogies, program administration, and photography education. She is committed to supporting artistic and cultural production that centers the healing and liberation of communities most affected by injustice.

Ariana’s photography practice is rooted in an exploration of the material culture of memory and the varied intersections of place and race in San Francisco, CA, her hometown.

She is a core member of the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project and manages youth programs at the International Center of Photography.

She received her Master's of Social Work from UC Berkeley and her Bachelor's in Urban Studies and African & African-American Studies from Fordham University.


David Rios Ferreira:

David Rios Ferreira has exhibited in galleries and museums in the US and abroad including CoCA (Seattle, WA), Nemeth Art Center (Park Rapids, MN) and Kunstraum Richard Sorge Gallery (Berlin, Germany). He has held residencies at the Lower East Side Printshop (New York, NY), Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts (New York, NY) and The Center for Book Arts (New York, NY). Rios Ferreira has participated in professional development programs such as Emerge 11 at Aljira (Newark, NJ) and the Bronx Museum’s Artist in the Marketplace (AIM) program (Bronx, NY). Awards include a New Jersey State Council on the Arts Fellowship, the Innovative Cultural Advocacy Fellowship from the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute, a National Association of Latino Arts & Culture Fund for the Arts grant and the ArtSlant Grand Prize. Recent exhibitions include Bronx Calling: The Fourth AIM Biennial, The Bronx Museum of the Arts (Bronx, NY), And by each crime and every kindness, Sunroom Project Space at Wave Hill (Bronx, NY), Uproot at Smack Mellon (Brooklyn, NY) and Mirrored by Nature at Welancora Gallery (Brooklyn, NY). David Rios Ferreira lives and works in New York and Jersey City, and holds a BFA from The Cooper Union.

Gerald Leavell:

My work is rooted in self-reflection, history, and making connections across communities and cultures. I am inspired by preachers and deacons, black cowboys, farmers and missionaries, free spirits, griots, artisans, historians, scientists and philosophers, professional athletes and recovering addicts, artists, hustlers, and educators. Sometimes more than one of these roles is manifest in a single individual. Rare words, distant cultures, collective intellect also attract my attention.

I create narratives based on writings, happenings, performative gestures, two- and three-dimensional works, and multi-media good projects. For this, I draw from my heritage, education, and unique upbringing, which was split between city and country life in Texas, then traveling – living in the world.

Gerald Leavell II, is currently based between Baltimore, MD and Dallas, TX. He is a 2016 CCCADI / ICA alumnus.

Haydil Henriquez:

Born ya-i-dil. Haydil Henriquez is an arts educator, cultural worker and Bronx-bred poet. Daughter of diligent Dominican parents, a taxi driver and a waitress with many dreams, she was humbly raised to value her Caribbean culture, elevating her black roots. Along with her three sisters, every summer she would return to her parent’s home desperately searching for her own space in the verdant island—a duality she reflects on in her poetry. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology & Education from Swarthmore College (2014), and has worked with communities across the diaspora facilitating oral storytelling workshops. Haydil currently serves her Bronx community as the Co-Director of the DreamYard Art Center.

Joselina Fay:

JOSELINA FAY // Joselina Fay is a graduate of Fordham University with a BA in Urban Studies and Latino and Latin American Studies. She has worked extensively with youth and community development organizations in Massachusetts, New York and Santo Domingo, DR, with a focus on social mobilization and development through education and art. Joselina also has extensive experience in organizational structures development in the nonprofit sector. Joselina currently works as the Program Manager for DreamYard Project in the Bronx, NY.


Mirland Terlonge:

My current work is a response to news media representations of death and public protest as it relates to blackness. Integral to this examination is the consideration of black death as a requirement in American democracy. I work across mediums seeking to highlight nuances and contradictions in our definitions of existence, co-existence, and justice in America. Working as an event florist in my mother's floral design business informs my aesthetic decisions and approach to re-contextualizing elements from social and current events in order to strip away the artifice and refocus on our shared humanity.

Mirland Terlonge (American b. 1991) originally from Miami, FL, is a multidisciplinary artist who works and lives in New York City. A Franklin Furnace Fund recipient (2015), she has recently participated in numerous exhibitions such as, Stranger in the Village at Gelb Gallery (Philips Academy Andover), Ohne, Prickland, Saft at Spike Quarterly Gallery in Berlin, Germany, I Can’t Breathe, at the ARC gallery in Chicago, Illinois and Smack Melon’s RESPOND show in Brooklyn, New York. She also teaches at YWCA Brooklyn where she directs a performance and visual arts program for their residents. She received her MFA at Pratt Institute and BFA from the University of Florida.


Nadia Williams:

Nadia Williams is Director of the Parsons Scholars Program and Assistant Professor at Parsons School of Design. In addition to being a proud alum of CCCADI’s Innovative Cultural Advocacy fellowship, she is an alum of Race Forward’s Racial Equity Art Innovation Lab, sits on the National Advisory Council of NCORE (National Conference of Race and Ethnicity in Higher Education), and co-founded the Radical Mama Educator inquiry-to-action group through NYCoRE (NY Collective of Radical Educators).  Nadia is a graduate of the Parsons BFA Fashion Design department who began her career designing in a corporate environment, and later moved to Mexico, where she explored part of her cultural identity and her commitment to social justice through design. At The New School, Nadia has has led a range of university-wide initiatives that center communities of color, and is continually impressed by the brilliance of students who hold the university accountable to values of social justice. Over the course of 14+ years of teaching design courses at Parsons and in public schools, she's had the joy of working with young people who actively give her hope for the future.  At the center of all of Nadia’s work is a commitment to expanding access to recognition, compensation and positions of power within the arts for people of color in order to claim our long legacy as artists.

Stephanie Cunningham:

Stephanie is an agent for arts and culture forever in a state of exploration, investigation, preservation, and creation. She works to paint a larger portrait of the arts world and introduce new ways of seeing and thinking about arts and culture. Stephanie utilizes museums and other cultural entities as a medium for discussions but her messages transcends beyond gallery walls and performance halls to spark curiosity, create an echo chamber, demystify the field, and reflects on power and privilege as it relates to the arts sector. She is also the Co Founder and Creative Director of Museum Hue, an organization dedicated to the advancement of people of color through the arts. Stephanie has written about her work for Curator: The Museum Journal, Museums and Social Issues Journal, and the Center for the Future of Museums blog as well as headlined talks at the American Alliance of Museums and Museum Next conferences.

Vanezza Cruz:

Born and raised in the Bronx to Dominican parents, Cruz’s upbringing was always rich in color, pattern, and imagination. A mixed media artist and graphic designer, her work explores ideas of body image, beauty, cultural identity and representations of women in print by way of mixing aesthetics and self-reflection. Her preferred methods of work range from printmaking, painting, illustration, murals, collages and handmade books.


Vanessa López:

Vanessa López is a nationally recognized art educator through her service on the writing team for the National Core Arts Standards in Visual Arts, as the coordinator for the 2010 National Art Education Association Convention held in Baltimore, and her current role on the National Art Education Association Task Force for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.

Her research interests focus on cultural identities in school settings and urban education.  She has been published in the Art Education Journal, Art and Social Justice Education: Culture as Commons (2011), the New York State Art Teachers Association (NYSATA) newsletter and the National Art Education Association blog.  She makes things that die.

Zeelie Brown:

Zeelie Brown transforms art spaces into utopic, black, transfeminine, post-internet refuges called “soulscapes” merging cello performance, electronic music, and installation art to overturn landscapes of capital intent on the economic genocide of queer black people. She creates spaces of revolutionary lightness, gentleness, and warmth. She depth charges Yoruba and Kikongo embodied philosophies, met with the folk theory of her familyʼs maroon Alabama homestead, in order that those who experience her soulscapes leave freed. She is a current Create Change artist-in-residence with the Laundromat Project, was a 2017 Southern Constellations Fellow, a Fellow at Harlemʼs Caribbean Cultural Center, and a Column Shifting Fellow at the Flux Factory. She has performed and lectured at Swale, Pioneer Works, RISD, Flux Factory, Elsewhere, Recess Gallery, Project Row Houses, NYU, and Harvard University. She has been featured in Art in America, the Village Voice and will appear in an upcoming Women and Performance.

This exhibition is made possible with the generous support from American Express Foundation, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, New York State Council on the Arts, The Shelley and Donald Rubin Foundation, and the Andrew Mellon Foundation

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