Ladi'Sasha Jones smiles and looks at the camera.


Black Interior Spatial Thought is a participatory workshop organized around a set of design prompts on worldbuilding and mapping the local. The session offers an index of conceptual research-actions on Black interior space and design in the U.S. Participants are invited to engage modes of playful reflections on the built environments they call home.

Ladi’Sasha Jones (she/her) is a writer and curator from Harlem, NY. She has written for Aperture, Avery Review, Arts.Black, Houston Center for Photography, Art X Lagos, Temporary Art Review, Art-Agenda, The Art Momentum, and Recess among others. Her project, Black Interior Space / Spatial Thought was commissioned by THE SHED (NYC) as a part of Open Call 2021 and was the recipient of a 2021 Research and Development award from the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts. Currently, Jones is the Artist Engagement Manager for The Laundromat Project. She held prior appointments at the Norton Museum of Art, the New Museum’s IdeasCity platform, and the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. She holds a B.A. in African American Studies from Temple University and a M.A. in Arts Politics from NYU, Tisch School of the Arts.
Instagram: @ladi.sasha
Website: ladijones.com


Angled headshot of NIC Kay looking up at camera.


NIC Kay will facilitate this two-hour workshop that centers self-identified Black people who are interested in experimenting with movement in virtual space, whether to share with community or for each participant’s personal archive. Participants will be asked to consider how point of view, composition, color, and light play important roles in dancing online and translating live choreography for the internet. Please wear comfortable clothing. Your location should be well lite and provide space to move around the computer or phone screen.

NIC Kay (b. 1989 Bronx, NY) makes performances and organizes performative spaces. Their works have been performed nationally and internationally in spaces including Akademie der Künste, Berlin, Germany; Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, Toronto, Canada; Encuentro 19, Mexico City, Mexico; Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, United Kingdom; Portland Institute of Contemporary Art, Portland, OR; and University of Arts, Zürich, Switzerland. NIC was a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artists Award (2020). They published their first book, Cotton Dreams, with Candor Arts in 2020. NIC is a Black queer trans non-binary person.


Collage of headshots from five members of DAP Collective.
DAP Collective
From top right, clockwise: Deena Darby, Kiki Cooper, Taylor Holloway, Ebony Dumas, Sophie Weston, Chien


Designers and activists share two dynamic commonalities. Both seek out problems and throw all that they have, personally, professionally–or both–into trying to solve them. Designers and activists also envision the possibility for nearly everything—people, planet, and beyond—to be better. This mix of optimism and determination can unlock profound and immeasurable impact on communities, societies, and the world. Over the summer of 2021, Design As Protest (DAP) organizers took a literal “DAP NAP” to scale back organizing efforts and cultivate a culture of rest, balance, and focus. As a collective, this time allowed organizers to consider the ways they were activists in their own lives in addressing pressing topics outside of DAP—from the California wildfires, to mutual aid efforts in our towns, to family members in need of care, to personal meditation practices—that all needed our organizing skills — but even more so — our focus. Participants in this workshop will engage with DAP Organizers in embracing the courage of showing up in our own unique lives, relationships, households, and workplaces. Then we will ideate (and design) ways in which “everyday” activism poses an opportunity for scaling our efforts and tactics for larger, intractable issues and justice movements. In this interactive session, we will leverage design and human connection (aka networking) to dream, develop, and design ways to transform advocating for topics and people in our own lives into organizing for communal and societal change. Come through!

Presenters Include:
Kiki Cooper
Deena Darby
Sophie Weston Chien
Ebony Dumas
Taylor Halloway


From top left, clockwise: Caroline Honorien, Margarida Waco, Rasheedah Phillips


For this edition of Black in Design 2021: Black Matter, The Funambulist invites participants to join us for a collective discussion and mapping exercise centering on Black spatio-temporal consciousness, afrofuturism, and afro-sonic resistance. The session is initiated with a brief presentation and Q&A with Rasheedah Phillips, co-founder of Black Quantum Futurism, followed by a mapping exercise taking Phillips’ text ‘The Nowness of Black Chronopolitical Imaginaries in the Afro/Retrofuture’ (published in The Funambulist issue 24 ‘Futurism’) as a point of departure. The workshop is convened by Caroline Honotien and Margarida Waco, editorial advisors of The Funambulist.

Presenters include:
Margarida Waco
Caroline Honorien
Rasheedah Phillips



This discussion will explore the role of mentorship in the continuum of a design career by featuring the shared experience of participants in the inaugural Black in Design Mentorship Program – an initiative supported through the partnership of the GSD and Perkins & Will developed to promote greater representation of Black talent in the design fields. Begun in spring of 2021, the program aims to expand the ecosystem of engagement among Black designers by connecting Boston area high school students interested in design with current GSD graduate students and Perkins & Will designers who offer professional mentorship to both. Through the voices of current students and mentors, this panel will showcase how mentorship can empower young Black designers to determine what is possible for their lives and their careers, pursue their interests, and strengthen their design skills.

Presenters include:
Rania Karamallah
Natalie Volcy
Olivia Fox
Erika Eitland
Wanjiku Ngare
David Carter


Headshot of Ashley Wilkerson looking directly into the camera and smiling.
Ashley Wilkerson
Headshot of Andrea Yarbrough looking directly into the camera and smiling.
Andrea Yarbrough


Two excellent wellness and movement practitioners offer us moments throughout the conference to pause, breath, reflect, and connect to our bodies. Ashley Wilkerson will open and close the conference with a collective breath and encourage us to take up space in our bodies and through our breath on Saturday 10/9 at 2:00pm EST. Andrea Yarbrough will lead two 40-minute morning movement and reflective practice sessions at 9:00am EST on Saturday 10/9 and Sunday 10/10.

Ashley Wilkerson is a spirit-led actress, poet, trauma-informed meditation teacher, wellness practitioner, and consultant from Dallas, Texas. She currently resides in Los Angeles. She completed her Atma Yoga Training at Tree South LA and received her Mindfulness Training from Deer Park Monastery. Ashley has shared her expertise on various platforms such as All Def Digital, ATTN, and Facebook. She has presented at The California Wellness Foundation, Alliance For Safety & Justice, Revolve Impact, 72andSunny, Black Women For Wellness, Dallas Meditation Center, National Performance Network, etc. She is a principal member of Zeal Wellness and the founder of Brother Breathe, a mindfulness initiative designed for Black boys and men. Ashley has coordinated healing spaces and circles for hundreds of crime survivors and has helped bring more calm & positivity to various educational, corporate and creative sectors.
Instagram: @loveashleywilkerson @brotherbreathe Website: www.loveashleywilkerson.com

Andrea is a steward of in ℅: Black women (in care of Black women), a creative placekeeping initiative nurturing sites of care through a blend of urban agriculture, civic engagement, and art praxis. Her community-centered visual arts production works to reshape land-use policy by activating vacant space as sites of care.
Instagram: @dre_lasoul
Website: https://incareofblackwomen.us


Headshot of Darien Carr looking away at the camera while holding a pair of headphones that are on their head.
Darien Carr
Headshot of Tyler Kpakpo looking at the camera while resting his face in his hand.
Tyler Kpakpo


Two incredible DJs, Darien Carr and Tyler Kpakpo, shepherd our journey through this weekend and give us a reason to celebrate everyday Black life with sounds sourced from across the diaspora. Tune in on Hopin on Friday at 6:30pm and Saturday at 6pm to get your weekend right!

Darien Carr is a DJ, artist and architect in training at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Their work has been exhibited at The MIT Media Lab, Faneuil Hall and Harvard’s Smith Campus Center. Carr’s work has also been featured by NPR, Garage Magazine (Vice Media), The Knight Foundation and Pidgin.
Instagram: @dariencarr_
Linktree: https://linktr.ee/dariencarr

Instagram: @tylerkpakpo
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/tylerkpakpo