East Portland Arts and Literary Festival 2020

November 11-20, 2020
Free and online

We have been wrestling with what the East Portland Arts & Literary Festival (EPALF) should look like this year. Should we go forth with the festival as usual? Does it need a different format? How can we inspire our communities to keep going?

After months of musings and conversations, we decided to transform our 4th annual EPALF into a humble offering focused on resilience, care, and transformation. We hope that EPALF 2020 can provide moments of nourishment in our ongoing efforts to renew, heal, and strengthen our capacities to tend to ourselves and each other in light of an uncertain future.

We invite you to join us for EPALF 2020, which includes:

The Creative Practice of Transformative Justice with the Asian American Feminist Collective

Wednesday, November 11, 2020, 5pm-7pm
A BIPOC only workshop in collaboration with APANO’s Resilience Series
This workshop has reached full capacity, and registration is now closed.

This interactive two-hour workshop hosted by the Asian American Feminist Collective focuses on transformative justice through arts, creative, and cultural practices. Beginning with an introduction to transformative justice as feminist praxis, the first hour features a conversation with cultural organizers Leila Raven, Mon Mohapatra, and Sarah T. Hamid on cultivating safety, resilience, accountability, and care in our daily relationships, creative collectives, and our broader communities. We discuss the ways that creative practices can transform oppressive dynamics and be used as an organizing tool. In the second hour, participants will have the opportunity to reflect on challenges and share ideas and resources in small group break-out sections. This is a BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) only space hosted in collaboration with APANO’s Resilience Series.

Meet our Artists-in-Residence at O82!

Friday, November 13, 2020, 5:30pm-7:30pm
An opportunity for all artists, organizers, and cultural workers in the greater Portland area to get to know our Artists-in-Residence and each other
ASL interpretation provided

Join us to meet the East Portland Art + Justice Lab’s first cohort of Artists-in-Residence! From September 2020 – November 2021, Sabina Haque, Cary Miga, Roshani Thakore, Nikki Acevedo, Myra Aldan, and Felecia Graham will work together to create new community artworks for East Portland, all situated in and around the Orchards of 82nd (O82). Hear what projects they are working on and how you may be able to get involved. Plus, we’ll have some time with the artists and with each other to connect and share how we are all sustaining our creative practices together during this time. Since artist residency is grounded in local community, this event is specifically designed for artists, organizers, cultural workers in the greater Portland area. Join us to get to know your neighbors, friends, and fellow artists!

The East Portland Art + Justice Lab’s Artist Residency Program is an initiative that developed from the community member recommendations from the Orchards of 82nd Art Plan, Living Culture: Past, Present and Future. Each pair’s community artwork will be focused on a relevant social topic, such as housing, food justice, education, and public health. This relationship-prioritized program will help build pathways to preserve and sustain connections between neighborhood residents in order to cultivate community resiliency and a strong social fabric.

Building Safer Communities: Creating Community Safety Agreements and Transformative Justice Practices within Community Arts Spaces with Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha

Thursday, November 19, 2020, 5pm-7pm
A BIPOC only workshop in collaboration with APANO’s Resilience Series
Register here: bit.ly/epalf-bsc
Capacity is limited
ASL interpretation provided

We know that community-based arts and cultural spaces are life-giving for our communities — but what happens when sexual assault, relationship abuse or boundary violations crop up in those spaces? In this workshop, we’ll talk about some common dynamics and situations that can come up in our arts and cultural spaces, and learn about some practices and policies transformative justice and anti-violence organizers have created to prevent, address, and repair harm and abuse when they emerge. Participants will leave with a ton of resources and options, including those created by API feminist cultural workers and transformative justice workers over the past twenty years. This is a BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) only space hosted in collaboration with APANO’s Resilience Series.

Reclaiming Indigeneity: Pacific Islander Stories of Healing with Ka Lei Hali’a O Ka Lokelani, Kevin Lionga Aipopo, and Simeon Jacob & Isamo Manuel Jr.

Friday, November 20, 2020, 1pm-2pm
An online multimedia performance in collaboration with UTOPIA-PDX and the Kennedy Center
Watch live on Facebook and YouTube

In a series of multimedia performances, artists Ka Lei Hali’a O Ka Lokelani, Kevin Lionga Aipopo, and Simeon Jacob & Isamo Manuel Jr. share their perspectives on reclaiming indigeneity, honoring the wisdom of our ancestors, and healing through storytelling. This online public performance is presented in collaboration with UTOPIA-PDX and the Kennedy Center’s Arts Across America series.

Caring Package #2: Caring for our Shared Futures

Friday, November 20, 2020, online release
A digital collection of artwork centered on care, with contributions by Georgina Brooks, Jenny M. Chu, Leialoha Kau’la, Hannah Kim, Sloane Leong, Mickey Sanchez, and Vo Vo

Our community has been searching for ways to expand, practice, and embody care – care for ourselves, our loved ones, and our communities. In response, we are proud to present Caring for our Shared Futures, our second digital collection of artwork centered on care. With contributions from Portland-based artists Georgina Brooks, Jenny M. Chu, Leialoha Kau’la, Hannah Kim, Sloane Leong, Mickey Sanchez, and Vo Vo, this “Caring Package” envisions a world that prioritizes our lives, cultures, and worldviews and imagines what a just and equitable future for all looks like. Caring for our Shared Futures will be released at the end of this year’s EPALF as an offering of hope, strength, and imagination for our communities.

Download Caring Package 2 here.

Tune into Vo Vo’s “Will Not Be” as part of our Caring Package release.

If you would like to request digital accommodations or have any access questions about these events, please contact Candace Kita, Cultural Strategy Director, at [email protected] We will do our best to provide requested accommodations to make our events as accessible as possible for attendees.

EPALF 2020 has been made possible with support from: