At the Intersection of Latinx and Queer: A Panel Discussion with local artists and community leaders
Panel Discussion with Aviona Creatrix Rodriguez Brown, Jay Chavez, Anahí Alexia Garcia, and Eileen Jimenez
Moderated by Gabrielle Moore
Join Seattle Rep in conversation with local Latinx and Queer artists and community members as they reflect upon the subjects presented in I am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter and unveil their own influences behind their art and stories. Celebrating the powerful strides of the Latinx and Queer community is essential as the fight for equality and inclusion is a continuous cause.
Meet the Panelists
Aviona Creatrix Rodriguez Brown
Aviona Creatrix Rodriguez Brown instills inclusivity and accessibility, by creating multidisciplinary art to tell stories surrounding being multiracial, exploring queerness, working through mental illness, stress, navigating drug addiction, and homelessness. Using tools and resources from smART Grants, Artist Up Scholarship, and the Mentorly Scholarship The Creatrix has developed healing workshops, along with a 45-minute solo show derived from self written poetry which has been translated into Spanish and toured to New York, Pennsylvania, Oregon and Washington. Through ongoing community-oriented youth projects, they aspire to educate the masses on self-awareness and the benefits of art alternatives when dealing with everyday stresses. Creatrix encompasses the many art avenues to which they contribute:
Arts Education Administration, (2) Board Memberships, Curating, Directing, Teaching, Mentoring, Stage Managing, Performing, Producing, Writing.
Jay Chavez (they/them) is a Seattle based playwright, educator, and all around theatre maker. Through the power of Red Bulls they earned a BA in Theatre from Western Washington University, concentrating in Directing, Dramatic Writing, and Education. They were crowned the unofficial title of Lil’ Miss Kennedy Center and Miss Kennedy Center Continental for their play “how to clean your room (and remember all your trauma)” which was awarded The KCACTF National Undergraduate Playwriting Award 2020 and the David Mark Cohen National Award in 2021. “how to clean” is featured in the Methuen Drama Book of Trans Plays, a first of it’s kind anthology of Trans plays written by Trans playwrights for Trans people. It’s been over two decades and Jay is still chasing the knowledge of how wind works. They currently work as a Teaching Artist at Seattle Children’s Theatre teaching playwriting, sketch comedy, and acting. Along with that, they also have the totally real not fake job as a Marine Science Puppeteer at the Seattle Aquarium teaching patrons about empathy around sea creatures.
Eileen Jimenez is a body of water. Her mother is Maria Cruz Jimenez, her grandmother is Eloisa Saavedra, and her great-grandmother is Isidora Saavedra, matriarchs of the Ñätho (Otomí peoples). She is a queer printmaker and a doctoral student, currently living in occupied Duwamish Territory (Seattle, Washington). As an Indigenous leader, community member, educator and as an artist, everything she does and creates is influenced by her many intersecting identities and lived experiences. She creates the art, the structures, the programming and the educational experiences she wishes she and her community would have seen and had access to growing up. Eileen uses linocut and mixed-media techniques to develop her own ways of telling stories in the complex layers that they exist in, as well as to demonstrate the ways that we are connected to the Land and to each other. This is part of her ongoing journey to heal and to share her family’s and community’s stories. She aims to create pieces that embody Indigenous life, joy, resilience, and relationship to Land. In her current body of work, she focuses on the embodiment of the divine as manifested through our bodies, specifically our hands.
Sareni Ruiz (she/they).
I am a first generation queer chicana born and mostly raised just north of LA. I moved to Seattle in 2014 where I began connecting with folks in our community through a youth mentorship program called The Service Board. In 2017 I took a break from TSB to support local grassroots movements like Fuerza Colectiva, La Resistencia, and Somos Seattle that focused on Latinx and immigrant rights/advocacy. I am currently a student at Seattle Central College with the goal acquiring a psychology degree.
Anahí Alexia Garcia
Anahí Alexia Garcia is a 22 year old Queer Xingona who was born and raised in Burien, Washington. She is a graduate of Mount Rainier High School, and is currently in their 4th year at Evergreen State College with a plan to graduate with a dual degree of Arts and Science in 2024. Knowing from a young age that they were queer and being open with their family about it, Anahí has learned and been able to create space with family, friends and community to be their most authentic selves. Anahí currently works at their schools First People’s Multicultural and Queer Student Services as a Peer Navigator. Her work includes cultivating a safe and uplifting space for Evergreen's marginalized student body.