Building Care and Public Memory: Artist Talk

THU, NOV 30, 2023

Building Care and Public Memory: Artist Talk with The Tandang Sora Project

Join us for an evening of conversation at the crossroads of art, history, and care. Meet the artists of “The Tandang Sora Project: Building Care and Public Memory” exhibition as they share their approaches for bringing care into public spaces and memories. Discover their methods, including participatory research, portraiture, and art, in illuminating the stories and contributions of immigrant Filipino women in Queens.

Artist Bios:
Princes De Leon is a student at CUNY City College of New York where she is pursuing a degree in Architecture (B.Arch) at the Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture. Princes is a first-generation Filipino-American and currently lives in Queens, New York. In her free time, she works part-time waiting tables and helps manage her parent’s businesses at Amazing Grace Restaurant and Amazing Grace Grocery, located in the heart of Little Manila, Queens. When her parents first opened Amazing Grace Restaurant during the start of the COVID pandemic in November 2020, Princes worked full-time at her family’s business while taking classes online as a high school senior. It was through this experience that she was able to connect with the migrant Filipino community within Woodside and became interested in community-based design. Recently, Princes has made efforts towards being active in her neighborhood by testifying before the NYC Districting Commission. Currently, Princes is the architectural intern for Little Manila Queens Bayanihan Arts where she uses her technical skill sets from being an architecture student to involve herself with community-based arts and creative placekeeping efforts for the diasporic Filipino community in Woodside, Queens. In the future, she aspires to use her passion for advocacy to enrich communities through urban planning and architecture.

Xenia Diente specializes in the field of public art and lives in Woodside Queens, NYC. With twenty years of public service, Xenia currently serves as Public Art Deputy Director for the NYC Department of Design and Construction overseeing the agency’s public art program. She works extensively with emerging and established visual artists to design, fabricate and install public art in civic facilities and infrastructure for the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs Percent for Art Program and serves as a liaison to the NYC Public Design Commission. Other program areas include temporary art at construction sites, artwork conservation, Public Artist in Residence, and  BUILT/NYC, a pilot program for furniture and industrial designers.  In 2021, she was invited to serve on the cultural committee on the Urban Design Forums “Streets Ahead” Working group to advance ideas and proposals to envision a more vibrant, equitable streetscape. Xenia’s work as an artist ranges from social practice artist in residence led by Rick Lowe at the Atlantic Center for the Arts to recently 2020 Create Change Artist in Residence through The Laundromat Project supporting creative placekeeping efforts in Little Manila, Queens. Xenia is active in her neighborhood, and is the founder of Little Manila Queens Bayanihan Arts, a collaboration between artists and cultural workers who support community-based arts and creative placekeeping efforts by and for the diasporic Filipino community in Woodside, Queens, as well as the greater New York City area. She serves on the executive board of the Filipino American National History Society NY chapter. Xenia holds a BFA from The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. She is also a Coro New York Leadership Center graduate. 

Jaclyn Reyes is a visual, performing and teaching artist, designer, and cultural organizer based in New York City. She engages in social practice, community-based art, and creative place-keeping interventions with Little Manila Queens Bayanihan Arts. She earned her BFA in Art Photography from Syracuse University after studying studio art at California State University Long Beach. In 2019, she completed her master’s degree in Arts in Education at Harvard Graduate School of Education. Currently, she is PhD student in Social Welfare at The City University of New York (CUNY) Graduate Center, where she is examining diaspora engagement in transnational care systems.

Kimberly Tate (she/they/we), founder of Studio Galaxxxia,  is a multidisciplinary embodied truth seeker, designer, dancer, yoga teacher, organizer and mother based in Flatbush, Brooklyn (unceded Munsee and Canarsie Lenape land). She is the granddaughter of Alfred & Josefina Pacho Tate and Felipe & Rosario Alibadbad Serrano from Leyte, Philippines. Trained as an architect and practicing across disciplinary boundaries, Kimberly makes work to dream, to heal, to make space for grief and joy, to build kinship and belonging, to honor and restore our embodied inheritance and to recover agency in spheres we inhabit and design. She is also design faculty at Parsons School of Design at the New School, a Laundromat Project Create Change Fellowship alum and an educator at the AIANY Center for Architecture. 

This project is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.