Vanessa Rochelle Lewis (she/her)
Born and raised in South Central, Los Angeles, Vanessa Rochelle Lewis (MFA) is a Queer, Fat, Black, Femme performer, facilitator, educator, writer, activist, healer, joyful weirdo, and Faerie Princess Mermaid Gangsta for The Revolution. Vanessa has danced across many professional and creative stages. She has been a Writer and Co-Managing Editor for acclaimed feminist magazines, Everyday Feminism & Black Girl Dangerous; a community college instructor at multiple Bay Area schools and radical transformative justice programs; a fundraiser and events coordinator for the Queer Women of Color Media Arts Project; the Artist In Residence for the Young Women Freedom Center where she facilitated Art Healing Workshops and a Master Class for formerly incarcerated women, trans, and non-binary people; and so much more. She is currently a core team member for Creating Freedom Movements (a year long social education project that supports grassroots visionary leaders to incubate healing and joy projects while learning more about the art, theory, and practice of social justice movements) and a Creative and Programming Consultant for the Positive Results Center (a family run organization founded by Lewis’s mother, Kandee Rochelle Lewis, to create awareness and prevent the trauma that comes from experiencing violence and abuse! PRC specializes in addressing the impacts and source of bullying, sexual abuse, dating, domestic or inter-personal violence and sex trafficking).Vanessa is the Founding Director of Reclaim UGLY: Uplift Glorify Love Yourself – And Create A World Where Others Can As Well! Her vision is to co-create a world where everyone knows that they are a safe, welcomed, and valued member of their communities; has the support to dream authentically and exist in their truths; and accepts that there is no face, no body, and no person who is ugly or unworthy of love and acceptance. In 2020, Reclaim UGLY hosted Solidarity Healing September (an online, month-long, racial justice heal-in/teach-in that was a fundraiser and heart-raiser for Black Healing October) and Black Healing October (a month of daily FREE online healing workshops for Black people by Black people).
Reclaim UGLY: Uplift Glorify Love Yourself And Create A World Where Others Can As Well, the book, will be published by North Atlantic Press and dispersed by Penguin Random House in October 2021.
When she’s not trying to save the world, Vanessa loves listening to audiobooks; flirting with her friends, her partner, and strangers; and swimming in every body of water she can find.
Vanessa Rochelle Lewis is a healer with a satchel full of medicine words,
A conjuror with desire to nurture other artists as they create magic and save lives,
A faery princess mermaid gangsta for the revolution,
A lush-bodied, Black femme Goddess motivated by sensuality and freedom,
An educator and performer with a passionate exuberance for silliness, laughter, and the stage,
A starlet who doesn’t want to be in the spotlight alone,
A lover of all things collective, emergent, and interdependent,
A wild-seed born and blossomed in South Central, Los Angeles,
A fighter with fists born of circumstance and a heart that refused to harden,
A warrior committed to freedom, brow dripping with resilience, wings crusted with diamonds that grew from trauma healed,
A sunbeam drama kid, always ready to explore the whimsy of imagination with others,
A dreamer who’s hungry for more – more understanding, more expansive enlightenment, more friendship, more growth, more compassion, more love, more creativity, more access for her people,
An activist committed to unpacking the seeds, kernels, and fabrics of social justice, liberation for all, and collaborative healing.
An alchemist who knows how to turn spirit-wounds into magic, oppression into possibility, resentment into vulnerability, insecurity into self-expansion, anger into love,
An Ethical Hedonist and Pleasure Activist committed to the transformative potency of using joy as a tool for decolonial healing, connection, intellectual assessment and movement work, A good witch who highly values compassion, love, curiosity, and using the forces that be for generative transformation rather than revenge,
A Domme Mistress with a love for tender, gentle things; devotion and nurture; power exchange; role play; deeply consensual BDSM relationships; subs of all genders and expressions; intimacy; and magic,
A survivor, through and through, and extremely proud of it,
An unapologetically integrated person – intersectional, full, able to be held accountable, and unwilling to compromise any part of herself,
A Free Black Woman,
A lover of words and expression,
And a goofy, romantic, and rascally flirt.