Meet our 2023 Engaging Artist Fellows!

Posted on Tuesday, January 17th, 2023

We are excited to announce our 2023 Engaging Artist Fellows: Carrie Sijia Wang, Chava DiMaio, Danielle Cowan, Jessica Angima, Mei Ling Yu, Nava Derakhshani, and Ray Jordan Achan.

More Art’s year-long Engaging Artists Fellowship is designed to help emerging NYC artists and community organizers develop and sustain a socially engaged and public art practice. The Fellowship program curriculum includes mentorship, peer networking, access to programming opportunities in New York City, and workshops and artist talks tailored to the interests/needs of the cohort. The infrastructure and laboratory provided by More Art allow selected emerging and underrepresented artists to gain a deeper understanding of the history and vitality of public and socially engaged art and encourage artists to expand and develop social practice. Click here for more info on the Engaging Artists program.

Meet our 2023 Fellows

Carrie Sijia Wang

Carrie Sijia Wang (she/her) is an artist and educator based in New York. Combining art, technology, and research, she makes performances, videos, and participatory experiences to explore the humanization of machines and the mechanization of humans. 

Wang is a Year 8 member of NEW INC, 2021 Pioneer Works resident, and 2020 Mozilla Creative Media Award recipient. She has shown and presented work with venues including Rhizome, New Museum, Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art, Onassis Foundation, ACM SIGGRAPH, and A.I.R. Gallery. Her work has been featured in publications including the Business Insider, Slate, and Computerworld. She teaches Interactive Media Arts at NYU.

Chava DiMaio

Chava DiMaio (he/they) is a trans-masc Filipino/Brazilian storyteller, who possesses the worst memory imaginable. 

His work is a direct defiance to that sentiment.

A guerilla approach to interdisciplinary collaging; jazz/folk melodic fusion littered with missed calls + undeniably New York soundscapes.. receipts, letters, and pressed flowers caress 35mm stop motion animations.. each frame, hand cut with love and care, in an effort to personify the present moment.

Blending the convenience of digital software + textural nostalgia of analog formats to evoke the emotional recall of shared human experiences. Love, pain, joy, despair.. change and our acceptance of the fact.. our subjective differences showcased through universally emotional similarities. 

He received his AA in Classical French Horn/Studio Recording Technology before leaving to serve as the youngest of 20 artists in the ‘2021 Stonehenge NYC’ artist residency program. He works as a freelance audio engineer at ‘moon studios’ (NY), and can be found hand roasting coffee beans at ‘Gentle Brew’ (Long Beach, NY).

Danielle Cowan

Danielle (she/they) is a blind, queer and Blackarican native New Yorker dabbling in organizing, performance and poetry. Her art comes from fascination with what it means for a body or place to hold multiple sometimes conflicting identities and playing with ways to write within shared histories and trauma. Her work has been published in Causeway Lit’s Revolution Issue, Mobius: the Journal of Social Change and elsewhere. She was an artistic investigator for Rattlestick Playwrights Theater’s Block by Block Project and was a spring 2022 Office Hours Poetry Workshop fellow.

Jessica Angima

Jessica Angima (she/her) is a first-generation Kenyan American organizer, meditation teacher and social practice artist. In a constant state of process, she facilitates intimate community through the exploration of art, justice, and contemplative practice.

Her identities as the daughter of Kenyan immigrants and a Black American woman deeply inform her community-based practice. Her work primarily focuses on deep vulnerability, using meditation and creative practices as methods of awakening consciousness. Jessica blends dharma, ancestral wisdom and poetics to decenter European thought frames and lead herself and others toward liberation.

With over 400 hours of meditation instruction training, she has worked with BRIC, Brooklyn Museum, the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts, Dia Art Foundation, Google, SELF Magazine, SHAPE Magazine, theSkimm, Tricycle Magazine and more. Jessica was a 2019 Create Change Fellow at The Laundromat Project and holds an MA in Arts Politics from New York University Tisch School of the Arts. She is a member of Inner Fields Collective and serves as Deputy Training Director at Arena.

Jessica lives in Brooklyn, NY on unceded Lenape territory with her cat and her books.

Mei Ling Yu

Mei Ling (she/they) self-identifies as a cis-gender, queer Chinese-American and Gong Fu Cha Practitioner. Born, raised and based in New York City, on unceded Lenapehoking land. Mei Ling is deeply passionate about radical healing, spirituality, and well-being. A life-long devotee of Tea, Cha, the healing arts, somatic practices and experienced in practicing Gong Fu Cha, 4 years now.

Mei Ling is a child of Toishanese immigrants, coming from an ancestry of village farmers and Chinese medicine people. Mei Ling aspires to study spiritual herbalism and farming to reconnect and deepen their practice with medicine of the East and West, integrating ancient and modern practices.

Nava Derakhshani

Nava Derakhshani (she/her) is a multimedia artist with a background in Architecture and Sustainable Development. Born to Iranian parents in eSwatini, her work explores themes of migration, identity, belonging, and gender. She is a 2020 graduate of the International Center for Photography, NYC, and works in images, as well as form and sculpture.

Ray Jordan Achan

Ray Jordan Achan (he/him/his) is an Indo-Caribbean, Brooklyn based theater-maker. Ray is the Founding Artistic Director of EXILED TONGUES, a performance collective that provides financial, artistic and collaborative support to artists of the global majority who center diasporic consciousness. Ray’s performative work primarily deals with the intersection between racial and climate justice, particularly as they relate to the NYC coastline. He is the recipient of the 2022 NYSCA Individual Artist Grant for his site-specific documentary theater project, “Our Bang for Their Buck: No Pipeline for LNG”, the 2022 Creative Equations Fund from the Brooklyn Arts Council and a commissioned artist with Works on Water for his site-specific documentary theater project, “(Re)Imagining Greenpoint’s Green Waters”. Ray is a Rising Producer Fellow at the Creative & Independent Producer Alliance, and an Associated Artist at Culture Push. Ray is a graduate of Wesleyan University with a BA in Government and Theater with Honors. |