“Can we come together and build community to address the injustices we face – your contributions are an important voice that needs to be heard!!!” These lines read across the recent posts on the Facebook page for Quito Ziegler and Ethan Shoshan’s WERRRQSHOP, a weekly program held at the Joan Mitchell Foundation Education and Research Center. As a space for intergenerational mentoring for queer artistic and/or transient youth, the WERRRQSHOP has proven to be a responsive site for on-the-ground activism that aims to do just that: build community and fight injustice, through the arts.” – Visual Aids Blog, February 9th 2015, Alex Fialho
Werrrqshop, formerly founded as Craft Shack in 2013, is a New York-based community program that provides support, materials and skills-sharing opportunities for emerging queer artists to build their skills and find platforms for self-expression and continued art. Their programs include Craft Shack – a week-long summer retreat for queer homeless youth; and weekly Family Dinners at Sylvia’s Place, which they consider as stepping stone for further mentorship and collaboration. During Craft Shack, they filled the grounds of Easton Mountain retreat center with a shack with bolts of fabric, sequin trim, spray paint, glitter and other materials and made it a safe space where they felt encouraged to try new things and improve skills they already possessed.
Featured Image Photo Credit: Courtesy of the Artist