Episode 2 features an in-depth interview with Ari Melenciano, a Brooklyn-based artist, designer, creative technologist, researcher, and educator. In 2017, Ari founded Afrotectopia, a social institution fostering interdisciplinary innovation at the intersections of art, design, technology, Black culture, and activism through collaborative research and practice. She currently teaches creative technology and design at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, NYU’s Dept. of Digital Photography and Imaging, Pratt Institute’s Communications Design school, and Hunter College’s Integrated Media Arts MFA program.
In this episode, Ari speaks about her experience teaching everything from AP Computer Science, to kindergarten and middle school, to now at the university undergrad and graduate level. Growing up an artist, she explains her approach to art-making within a context of education and activism, as well as a way to move through life. She discusses Afrotectopia’s origins, and what she’s learned about community building and organizing over the years, as it has expanded to include a festival, fellowship program, summer camp, and, in January 2020, The School of Afrotectopia, a program that offered 10 free courses to over 250 students.
Ari's work is presented on her website - https://www.ariciano.com/. You can learn more about Afrotectopia here - https://www.afrotectopia.org/ and about the Imagineer Fellowship - https://medium.com/afrotectopia-imagineer-fellowship-2020/afrotectopia-imagineer-fellowship-2020-27a07a2a1ebb. The The syllabus from the Afrotectopia Imagineer Fellowship can be found here -
Read the interview as a transcript, with images and links, on our Medium Publication - https://medium.com/processing-foundation/createcanvas-season-2-interview-with-ari-melenciano-f84972d9e1cb