Michele Pearson Clarke

“Parade of Champions” (2015) explores the grief experiences of three black queer people, following the deaths of their mothers. Although grief is borne from loss of any kind, for an adult child, a mother’s death is incomparable. As universal and inevitable as it might be, this suffering is complicated by the restriction on mourning in our culture. Grief upsets us. It makes us uncomfortable. The bereaved are expected to mourn in private or at the very most, publicly for a short period only. For black queers, already unseen and othered, grieving a mother’s death requires a further pushing back against notions of disposability and invisibility.

Drawing on my own experience after my mother’s death in 2011, Parade of Champions centres this black queer counter-narrative in creating a poetic encounter with loss. Employing still video portraits and audio interviews, this immersive three-channel installation invites viewers to bear witness to this black queer grief. From https://vimeo.com/148414120

2 Promises in Life

The old saying “there are only 2 things in life that you are promised: death and taxes” inspired this piece. Tattooing death on one person’s pinky and taxes on their loved one’s pinky bonds these two together for life and acts as a kind of broken heart friendship necklace. These grim guarantees are something that can bring you down or when you catch a glimpse of your tattoo, you can laugh at the absurdity of the statement and reflect on life’s true offerings.


Generally understood to mean “approximately” or “about” when written beside a number, the tilde was originally used as a scribal abbreviation that meant a “mark of suspension”. To have the tilde exist as a temporary tattoo, the meaning of the character is at odds with the physical existence of itself.

The documentation photos below exemplify the tilde being used in the context of approximation. The temporary tattoos are packaged in random quantities. When combined with other packages, there is an invitation to the audience to utilize multiple characters in order to make designs or other forms.

Tilde, 2019.
Jennifer Zhao

Watch Tattoos


As a child, my friends and I used to draw watches on each other’s wrist for fun. Back in the days, a ball point pen is not easy to find for us since everyone uses pencil and only adult and older children can use a pen. To share a ball point pen that was hard to find and draw different watches on each others wrist was a simple mark of friendship. To recreate this childhood memory, I asked my classmates to draw each other a wrist watch with their own design and photographed it then translated it into a printable design. I then printed these “watches” on temporary tattoo paper and shared it with the class.

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Lettuce Tomato

A class collaborative publication about food. Each student collected dozens of images of food or food related objects, moments, instances and interactions. The process invited students to play and interact with food in ways they might not have before, including a food filled venture to Kensington Market in Toronto ON. As a class we designed and proofed the best spreads to create engaging, vibrant and mischievous compositions that allow the viewer to reflect on their own relationships to food.

Contributors: Sydney Coles, Leo Fan, Claire Gammal, Sarah Hernandez, Maddie Lychek, Hannah Moffitt, Abby Nowakowski, Emily Reimer, Jennifer Zhao, Chevanne Wisdom


Embrace is a tattoo which only becomes complete with an action. This action is a warm embrace and creates a perfect circle. When the tattoo is not in action it is an incomplete line that starts in the middle of the forearm and ends at the tip of the index finger. It’s functional for both people, open up your circle and get hugged. In this circle is a safe space.

Sarah Hernandez, Embrace, 2019