October 2019

We want to give a massive shoutout to Rachel Hoffman who helped us design and print a fancy new version of our Trans and Queer Resistance to Policing timeline, a core activity for one of our most popular workshops! Hit her up for all your graphic design needs!

The Chicago Architecture Biennial …And Other Such Stories is underway. In addition to an essay of ours being featured in a CAB-commissioned publication by The Funambulist, we participated at the end of last month in a public conversation titled Aesthetics of Violence and Resistance, from Fashion to Architecture, alongside Hoda Katebi and Leena Odeh. We appreciate the unique commitment of this year’s Biennial curators to Chicago residents, grassroots organizations, and radical struggles for a more equitable city.

We have our first feature in Them Magazine for their Queer History Month series, profiling the Women & Children First feminist bookstore, a Chicago institution celebrating its 40th year in business. The piece examines the store’s history, its unique commitments to disability justice, youth empowerment, and trans liberation as core to the feminist project, and future challenges the current staff are hoping to tackle. Look for it in the coming weeks!

We are taking the rest of October off! Summer was packed, the early fall has already included a lot of travel, and we are using the remainder of the season to settle into our new apartment, and reestablish some of our self-care routines that have fallen to the wayside in recent months.

Thank you for your continued support. It allows us to work, and it allows us to rest.

BH

September 2019

We’re currently in residence at the Amsterdam University of the Arts, teaching a weeklong intensive titled performance as protest/protest as performance to undergraduates at the Academy of Theater & Dance, and preparing to remount our solo performance piece Dancer As Insurgent tomorrow evening for the HALf6 series. Wish us luck!

When we return home, we will hit the ground running with Poetry Writing and Gender, Sex & Sexuality 101 workshops for first-year students at the Pritzker School of Medicine on September 10th. The following weekend we will be facilitating the Convening on Disrupting Police Gang Labeling, a gathering of orgs from across the U.S. in Chicago. The retreat, September 12th-13th, will focus on network building, evaluating local and national campaigns resisting police surveillance in Black, Brown, and undocumented communities, and planning future action steps. It’s an honor to offer our services to this crucial convening.

Back in Pride Month we sat down with our friends from SoapBox Productions to participate in their podcast Bourbon ‘n BrownTown. We talked Paris Is Burning, POSE, and the role of media in documenting, informing, and empowering the struggles of the oppressed. Soapbox PO has provided crucial grassroots media for multiple movements here in Chicago, and we appreciate the opportunity to support their work. Listen here!

Come next year our prices will likely be going upespecially for retreat facilitation and daylong/weeklong intensives. As ever, we prioritize community-based and grassroots organizations and collectives, and will negotiate to make sure our services remain accessible, but are also shifting to make our schedule less congested, and our new rent more affordable. You can help us out by respecting our minimum prices, and scheduling us at least a month in advance to offer workshops/events to your organization.

Thank you for your support and understanding!

BH

August 2019

This month marks our five year anniversary facilitating for Chicago Desi Youth Rising’s summer leadership retreat! As such, on August 10th we will be teaching not one but three consecutive workshops for the South Asian youth organization: Intro to Prison Abolition, Linking Anti-Blackness & Anti-Immigration, and Intro to Neoliberalism. Phew! Our relationship with CDYR is one of our longest and most cherished in Chicago. We love this collective, and can’t wait to celebrate and throw down together!

We’re closing out our summer with Engage Chicago students with site visits to Little Village Environmental Justice Organization and Organized Communities Against Deportations. It’s been enjoyable to acquaint undergraduates with the ethic of abolitionist organizing, and exciting to watch them make their own connections with Chicago’s phenomenal youth organizers.

We’re moving this month, and our rent is about to go up. Our Patreon page is still live, so if you haven’t already, please consider becoming a monthly donor there. This would be especially helpful for covering our upcoming moving costs and higher rent. Thank you so much to those who are already patrons!

Finally, we’re excited to share that September 2nd-6th we will be an artist-in-residence with the Academy of Theater & Dance at the Amsterdam University of the Arts! While there we’ll be teaching a weeklong intensive to undergraduates from multiple disciplines entitled performance as protest/protest as performance, and will also remount our solo performance piece Dancer As Insurgent.

The next time we write to you, it will be from Amsterdam!

BH