River and glammy

We are excited to publish another installment of our oral history project, "The Body As An Archive," featuring poet and visual artist River Huston and artist art educator Glammy Rose Spencer in conversation.

Watch, listen, or read the conversation at oralhistories.visualaids.org.

In an exchange that is by turns illuminating, hilarious, somber, and joyous, the two artists reflect upon a number of shared experiences, such as navigating care in the United States as HIV-positive women, reckoning with the aftermath of sexual violence, channeling grief for the loss of their loved ones into art, and using the power of comedy to both cope with and subvert systems of oppression such as sexism, transphobia, capitalism and patriarchy. River reflects on her decades of activism fighting for equitable treatment of women living with HIV and her documentation, via poetry, prose, painting and photography, of HIV-positive women’s narratives. Glammy shares how her practice as both an artist and an art teacher for young people in the Bay Area has helped her honor her ancestors while also positively contributing to the lives of future generations. The pair’s mutual admiration is electric and sincere, and models a framework for how to honor and hold space for one another against adversity.

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River Huston