Make-It Springfield is pleased to announce the four creative and talented individuals who have been chosen for our 2022 Residency Fellowship.
The award is intended to provide each Fellow the chance to focus on building a creative practice and encourage forward thinking. The awardees will have unlimited access to Make-It Springfield’s space and equipment, while being supported by our staff and creative community. The Fellowship includes a $3000 stipend and opportunities to present work-in-progress publicly.
Please help us welcome Emily Gray, Kaleighia Green, Khamiko Konzsaki and Glenn Yarnell:
Emily Gray is an artist and a writer: “I’m a storyteller more than anything because even my drawings always tell a story.” For a number of years, Emily has been working on a series of comics and short stories called “Iris Tiger Tails” that are inspired by the East Springfield/Liberty Heights neighborhood where she grew up—”it’s pretty much a giant love letter to my childhood.” Emily has already begun to map out area landmarks for inclusion in future drawings and believes that Springfield’s future includes many special things ahead. “I would love to have the chance to influence its future, and I believe my project can be a part of that.”
Kaleighia Green is passionate about art and and wants this project to be something that “the community and Make-it Springfield can benefit from.” Kaleighia plans to become more comfortable with creating abstract art. “I want to encourage creativity in others and get viewers to want to interact with it,” and also to promote character development and freedom of self-expression. “Art can help people identify emotional conflicts, reduce anxiety, and improve self-esteem and social skills.” Kaleighia also hopes to learn from the other Fellows and staff at Make-it Springfield, and to focus on growing in a positive direction. “I am so ready to step out of my comfort zone. I want to help get behind the mission to influence creative forward-thinking in our community.”
Khamiko Konzsaki is a fabricator who loves making things and being creative using a range of skills in glass blowing, leather work, blacksmithing and more. Always interested in sustainability, Khamiko is planning to focus on creating “really cool” wearable clothing, bags and shoes that use upcycled materials and can last for generations. Khamiko, who also dreams of eventually having an apprentice and teaching others, told us, “I want to use my skills to inspire, especially women of color; representation is important. When we all have our own sets of skills that we’ve been able to share and make, we raise up our community and make it stronger.”
Glenn Yarnell documents architecture in Springfield, to show the brightness that exists and to show the cityscape in new ways. He plans to create a virtual and physical exhibition to give people a chance to think about how they see themselves in the city, and how they see the city in their lives. Glenn is a longtime resident of Springfield, and currently a teacher. “I try to see the architecture in new ways. Sometimes I use reflections in the glass to change perspective. I hope my work will cause people to look at their surroundings, think about how they interact with their environment, and to see possibilities beyond what is immediately and obviously visible.”