Image credits, clockwise from top left: 1. Will Davis, image courtesy of the artist; 2. Alexis De Veaux, image courtesy of the artist; 3. Zackary Drucker, image courtesy of the artist; 4. T Fleischmann, image courtesy of the artist; 5. Jeffrey Gibson, image by Brian Barlow; 6. Camilo Godoy, image courtesy of the artist; 7. Will Rawls, image by Kennis Hawkins; 8. Julie Tolentino, image courtesy of the artist; 9. Lilly Wachowski, image by Christa Holka; 10. Constantina Zavitsanos, image by Allison Harris.
2023 Mentors Include Lilly Wachowski, Zackary Drucker, Will Davis, T Fleischmann, Jeffrey Gibson, Julie Tolentino, and More
Queer|Art, NYC’s home for the creative and professional development of LGBTQ+ artists, is pleased to announce the new Mentors for the 2023 Queer|Art|Mentorship (QAM) program cycle. The Mentorship program is the cornerstone of Queer|Art’s work, providing a platform of support for LGBTQ+ artists focused on creative issues and long-term sustainability of artistic practice. Now in its 12th year, the organization’s celebrated year-long creative and professional development program supports both remote and in-person participation between early-career and established LGBTQ+ artists from across the country. In doing so, Queer|Art|Mentorship bridges professional and social thresholds that often isolate artists by generation, discipline, and region.
The national cohort of 2023 Mentors are based variously in California, Illinois, Louisiana, New York, and Pennsylvania. Queer|Art proudly welcomes five new Mentors to the program: director and choreographer Will Davis; interdisciplinary artist, producer, activist, and actress Zackary Drucker (This Is Me; Transparent); author and artist T Fleischmann (Time Is the Thing a Body Moves Through); visual artist, educator, and 2012-2013 QAM Fellow Camilo Godoy; and writer, director, and producer Lilly Wachowski (The Matrix franchise, Sense8). We are also proud to welcome back five returning Mentors, including: writer, poet, and activist Alexis De Veaux (Yabo; Warrior Poet: A Biography of Audre Lorde); multidisciplinary artist Jeffrey Gibson; multidisciplinary choreographer Will Rawls; interdisciplinary performance installation maker Julie Tolentino; and multidisciplinary artist and performer Constantina Zavitsanos.
The 2022 Queer|Art|Mentorship Mentors by Field
Zackary Drucker / CA (Artist, filmmaker, cultural producer; The Lady and the Dale, 2021; This Is Me, 2015; Transparent, 2014; Whitney Biennial 2014; At Least You Know You Exist, MoMA PS1, 2012; Los Angeles Biennial, Hammer Museum, 2012)
Lilly Wachowski / IL (Director, writer, filmmaker, producer; The Matrix franchise, 1999-2021; Jupiter Ascending, 2015; Cloud Atlas, 2012; Sense8, 2015; V for Vendetta, 2005; Bound, 1996)
Alexis De Veaux / LA (Writer, Lecturer, Activist; Yabo, 2014; Warrior Poet: A Biography of Audre Lorde, 2004; The Woolu Hat; 1997; An Enchanted Hair Tale, 1987)
T Fleischmann / PA (Writer, organizer, and artist; We Want It All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics, 2020; Time is the Thing a Body Moves Through, 2019; Szygy, Beauty, 2011)
Will Davis / IL (Director and choreographer; Road Show, Encores! Off-Center, 2019; India Pale Ale, Roundabout Underground, 2018; Men on Boats, Playwrights Horizon, 2016; Duat, Soho Rep, 2016)
Will Rawls / NY (Multi-Disciplinary Choreographer; What Remains, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, 2017; The Planet-Eaters, The Chocolate Factory, 2013; recipient of the 2015 Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artists Award)
Julie Tolentino / CA, NY (Performance Artist, Writer; Whitney Biennial 2022: Quiet as It’s Kept, The Whitney Museum of American Art, 2022; Slipping Into Darkness, bury.me.fiercely, 2019, Performance Space NY; REPEATER, Commonwealth and Council, 2019; Always, Already, Haunting, “Disss-co,” Haunt, The Kitchen, 2019)
Jeffrey Gibson / NY (Multimedia Artist; Because Once You Enter My House It Becomes Our House, Socrates Sculpture Park, 2021; Jeffrey Gibson: Like A Hammer, Denver Art Museum, 2019; 2019 MacArthur Foundation Genius Grant recipient)
Camilo Godoy / NY (Interdisciplinary artist and educator; El Infiernito, PROXYCO Gallery, 2022; OMNISCIENT: Queer Documentation in an Image Culture, Leslie-Lohman Museum, 2021; AMIGXS, OCDChinatown, 2021; En Vivo y En Directo, CUE, 2019; Nobody Promised You Tomorrow, Brooklyn Museum, 2019)
Constantina Zavitsanos / NY (Multidisciplinary Artist, Performer; L&D Motel, Participant Inc., 2019; Nobody Promised You Tomorrow, Brooklyn Museum, 2019; Straying from the Line, Schinkel Pavillon, 2019)
Queer|Art|Mentorship (QAM) was launched in 2011 to establish an intergenerational and interdisciplinary network of support and shared knowledge for LGBTQ+ artists. Now entering its eleventh year, QAM has graduated 122 Fellows, with 71 Mentors, producing a diverse and vibrant community of filmmakers, authors, performers, visual artists, and curators. The program’s enduring success is in the many creative and professional relationships it has nurtured, which continue to propel the careers of a new generation of artists.
Every Fall, QAM welcomes 10-12 new Fellows in Film, Literature, Performance, and Visual Art. Throughout their year together, Fellows work closely with their Mentors and cohort to develop new creative projects and advance their professional development.
Artists supported through QAM have gone on to present their work at such prestigious venues as The Whitney Museum, New Museum, Queens Museum, Bronx Museum of Art, The Studio Museum of Harlem, Hammer Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art – San Diego, Sundance Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, BAM Cinematheque, The Public Theater, The Kitchen, Performance Space New York (PS122), Abrons Arts Center, Danspace, and White Columns, and have received residencies and fellowships from Jerome Foundation, MacDowell Colony, and Yaddo, among others.
The 2023 Queer|Art|Mentorship Program Cycle
Following a two-month application period, each Mentor will work with Queer|Art staff to select a Fellow within their respective field of creative practice. Fellows apply with a specific project they would like to work on during the program and, once accepted, meet with their Mentors monthly to discuss their progress. The 2023 cycle of the Mentorship program begins in January and ends 10 months later in October.
The timeline for Queer|Art|Mentorship is as follows:
- Applications open: June 1, 2022
- Application Deadline: July 31, 2022
- Applicants Notified: November 2022
- Program Begins: January 2023
- Program Ends: October 2023
The steady growth in volume of applications received during the first ten years of the program (numbering more than 320 last year) speaks to the important role Queer|Art|Mentorship performs within the arts community, as well as to the need of such programs in the face of an ongoing lack of traditional institutional and economic support for the creation of LGBTQ+ work. Prospective Fellows who are interested to apply should visit www.queer-art.org/mentorship for more information about the program, Mentors, and application instructions. Full bios for each Mentor are included below.
About the Queer|Art|Mentorship 2023 Mentors
Will Davis (he/him) is a transgender director and choreographer focused on physically adventurous work for the stage. Off-Broadway credits include: Road Show (Encores! Off-Center); India Pale Ale (MTC); Bobbie Clearly (Roundabout Underground); Charm (MCC); Men on Boats (Clubbed Thumb and Playwrights Horizons—Lucille Lortel nomination); and Duat (Soho Rep). Regional credits include: Spamtown,USA (Children’s Theater Company); Everybody (Shakespeare Theater Company); A Doll’s House, Part 2 (Long Wharf Theatre); The Carpenter (The Alley Theatre); Colossal (Olney Theatre Center and Mixed Blood Theater—Helen Hayes award for best direction); Evita (Olney Theatre Center—Helen Hayes award nomination); and multiple productions for ATC in Chicago where Davis also served as artistic director. He is an alum of the Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab, the NYTW 2050 Directing Fellowship, the Brooklyn Art Exchange’s Artist in Residence program, and is currently a Princeton Arts Fellow.
Alexis De Veaux (she/her; New Orleans, LA) is a black queer feminist writer of fiction, nonfiction and poetry whose work in multiple genres is nationally and internationally known. De Veaux was the 2019 Distinguished Speaker for the Anne Frank Project Social Justice Festival, an honor bestowed on her by SUNY Buffalo State College. She is one of a stellar list of American writers highlighted by LIT CITY, a public art initiative of banners bearing their names and images in downtown Buffalo, New York; in recognition of the city’s renowned literary legacy. She is co-Founder (with poet Kathy Engel) of The Center for Poetic Healing, a project of Lyrical Democracies, and the Flamboyant Ladies Theatre Company (with Gwendolen Hardwick). Born and raised in Harlem, New York City, she is published in six languages-English, Spanish, Dutch, Japanese, Serbo-Croatian and Portuguese.
Zackary Drucker (she/her; Los Angeles, CA) is an independent artist, filmmaker, and cultural producer. She has performed and exhibited her work internationally in museums, galleries, and film festivals including the Whitney Biennial 2014, MoMa PS1, Hammer Museum, Art Gallery of Ontario, MCA San Diego, and SF MoMA, among others. Drucker is an Emmy nominated producer for the docuseries This Is Me, and was a producer on the Golden Globe and Emmy Award-winning Amazon show Transparent. The Lady and The Dale, her directorial debut for television, premiered on HBO in early 2021.
T Fleischmann (they/them; Mount Pocono, PA) wrote the book-length essays Time Is the Thing a Body Moves Through and Syzygy, Beauty and the pamphlet Gonorrhea, SESTA, Institutions. Among other places, their work can be found in Guernica Magazine, The Anarchist Review of Books, and We Want It All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics. Fleischmann also collaborates on an ongoing body of visual work with the artist Benjy Russell and, when not writing, works for trans liberation and prison abolition from their home in rural Pennsylvania.
Jeffrey Gibson, (he/him; Hudson, NY) was born in Colorado Springs in 1972. His multimedia artistic practice synthesizes the cultural and artistic traditions of his Cherokee and Choctaw heritage with the visual languages of Modernism and themes from contemporary popular and queer culture. His work is a vibrant call for queer and Indigenous empowerment, envisioning a celebration of strength and joy within these communities. Gibson’s work is included in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York; Denver Art Museum; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian in Washington D.C.; National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa; Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, AR; among many others. Gibson is a recipient of numerous awards, notably a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship (2019); Joan Mitchell Foundation, Painters and Sculptors Award (2015); and Creative Capital Foundation Grant (2005).
Camilo Godoy is an artist and educator born in Bogotá and based in New York. He has participated in residencies at Movement Research, International Studio & Curatorial Program (ISCP), coleção moraes-barbosa, Recess, New Dance Alliance, among others. Godoy’s work has been exhibited at the Brooklyn Museum, Leslie-Lohman Museum, CUE, OCDChinatown, PROXYCO Gallery, New York; Moody Center, Houston; UNSW Galleries, Sydney; Centro de Arte Contemporáneo, Quito; among others. He has performed at Danspace Project, Movement Research at the Judson Church, Center for Performance Research, New York; Toronto Biennial; and Künstlerhaus Mousonturm, Frankfurt.
Will Rawls (he/him; New York City, NY), is a multi-disciplinary choreographer working in dance, video and installation across theaters, galleries and museums. Over the last ten years, he has used performance as a vehicle for reformulating perceptions and embodiments of Blackness in contemporary life. He has presented work at the Museum of Modern Art, Performa 15, Danspace Project, The Chocolate Factory Theater, the 10th Berlin Biennale and the Hessel Museum at Bard College. He is a recipient of a Herb Alpert Award, Guggenheim Fellowship, a 2021 Creative Capital Award, a United States Artists Grant and a National Dance Project Award. Rawls is the 2020-2021 California Regents Professor in UCLA’s Department of World Arts and Cultures/Dance.
Julie Tolentino (she/her; Los Angeles, CA; New York City, NY), is a Filipino-Salvadoran queer interdisciplinary performance installation maker whose work draws from visual, archival, collaborative, and movement strategies. Her work has been presented in solo and group shows including (selected) The Kitchen, Danspace Project, Participant, Inc., Performance Space New York, Performa 2005 and 2013, the New Museum, LACE, The Lab, PSi at Stanford University, the Nevada Art Museum, Aspen Art Museum, and as a collaborator in the 2022 Whitney Biennial. She/They have exhibited internationally in the UK, France, Germany, Philippines, Singapore, Abu Dhabi, and in Northern Macedonia at the Museum of Contemporary Art and in the Thessaloniki Biennale of Contemporary Art. They have served as a visiting/guest artist at UCLA WAC, UCLA New Genres, UCR-New Genres, Cal Arts-Performance, Rutgers-Art, Pratt-Art, BARD Curatorial Studies amongst others. She was a 2021-22 scholar-in-residence at NYU Steinhardt, a 2021 MacDowell and UCROSS fellow, a 2022-23 Queer Art Mentor with Anh Vo, and has been a TDR Provocations editor since 2012. Support includes Mid-Atlantic Foundation – Arts International, Anonymous Was A Woman, the Queer Art Sustained Achievement, Art Matters, and Foundation for Contemporary Art Awards. Tolentino is sponsored by Fractured Atlas, performs with Stosh Fila, and is represented by Commonwealth and Council.
Lilly Wachowski is a trans woman and lifelong Chicago resident. She is a college dropout, and has worked as a Building Maintenance Technician’s Assistant, self-employed Carpenter and Writer/Producer/Director for Warner Bros, Netflix and Showtime among others. Her projects include The Matrix franchise (1999-2021), Bound (1996), Jupiter Ascending (2015), Cloud Atlas (2012), Sense8 (2015), V for Vendetta (2005), and more. She also paints; sometimes she paints ducks.
Constantina Zavitsanos (they/them, New York City, NY), works in sculpture, performance, text, and sound to elaborate what’s invaluable in the re/production of debt, dependency, and means beyond measure. Zavitsanos has exhibited at the Brooklyn Museum, New Museum, Artists Space, The Kitchen, and Participant Inc. in New York; at Arika in Glasgow, Scotland; and at Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin, Germany. With Park McArthur, they co-authored “Other Forms of Conviviality” in Women & Performance (Routledge, 2013) and “The Guild of the Brave Poor Things” in Trap Door: Trans Cultural Production and the Politics of Visibility (MIT Press, 2017). They co-organized the cross-disability arts events “I Wanna Be With You Everywhere” at Performance Space New York and the Whitney Museum of American Art. Zavitsanos is a 2021 recipient of the Foundation for Contemporary Art’s Roy Lichtenstein Award. They live in New York and teach at the New School.
Queer|Art connects and empowers LGBTQ+ artists across generations and creative disciplines. Founded in 2009, we are an artist-led and community-centered organization—united by shared values of collective care, creative resilience, and the preservation and advancement of queer legacies and queer futures.
The devastating loss of a generation of artists to the ongoing AIDS pandemic has created a profound longing for cross-generational connections, mentorship, and community. Queer|Art serves as a ballast against this loss, seeking to highlight and address a continuing fundamental lack of both economic and institutional support for our community.
Ongoing programmatic initiatives include: our annual cornerstone program, the year-long Queer|Art|Mentorship; our long-running Queer|Art|Film series, sponsored by HBO at the IFC Center; and a wide array of awards, grants, and offerings that provide direct support to LGBTQ+ artists.