Round 16 (2023)

Tay Butler – The Play

Baird Campbell – The Big Queer Pop Up

Brian Ellison – Napoleon’s Vanishing Point

Jake Eshelman – (Bio)Diversity Bonds: Mapping Houston’s Ecological Heritage through Native Bees

Marley Foster – Flag Diary (What Protects)

Naomi Kuo – Garden Connections

Ruhee Maknojia – Outdoor Animation Screening

Matt Manalo – Alief Art House Residency

Eileen Maxson – Heirloom Haggle with the Maxsons

Alexis Melvin – Trans History Roadshow

Lorena Molina – At what cost?

Sarah Sudhoff – Exit Interview


Mesha Arant is a Chicago-based musician, arts administrator, and consultant. She is currently the Manager of Administration & Programs at 3Arts, a nonprofit arts organization that advocates for women artists, artists of color, and Deaf and disabled artists. She also serves as the organization’s accessibility coordinator, assuring that all communications and programs are accessible to their constituents. In 2020, she was selected for the Arts & Culture Leaders of Color Fellowship through Americans for the Arts (AFTA) and in 2019 she was awarded an Interfaith Innovation Fellowship through Interfaith America, a fellowship awarded to five people who cultivate ideas and projects that creatively address social issues through an interfaith lens. Her project, In Tune, brought artists from different religious and philosophical traditions together to collaborate and create work around themes of birth, shame, joy, and death. She is currently a board member at Sustain Music & Nature and serves as the Secretary of the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility board at the iO Theater (Chicago, IL) and as a Steering Committee member for the Black Interfaith Project through Interfaith America. She received her B.A. from Wofford College and a Master of Divinity from Yale University. 

Vinod Hopson is an artist and storyteller. His project, Those Who Desire, explores the lost, often difficult histories of the city of Houston through tours and cartography. Hopson’s research and stories center people and places of color obscured by dominant, white narratives and histories. Past tours have focused on Houston’s Downtown, historic Freedmen’s Town, and the 1917 Camp Logan Uprising. His current research focuses on the Brazos River, west of Houston, on whose banks the state’s first slave plantations were established, the first Texas millionaires were made, and where Jim Crow tactics were first tested large-scale. In 2021 and 2016, he was awarded support for his project from The Idea Fund, a re-granting program funded by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and administered by DiverseWorks, Aurora Picture Show, and Project Row Houses. Hopson received a BFA in Photography and Digital Media from the University of Houston. He was born in New Jersey and has lived in Houston since 1996.

Leslie Raymond joined the Ann Arbor Film Festival as its executive director in August 2013. In September 2019, Raymond’s leadership role expanded to include festival programming. Prior to her position with AAFF, as a teaching artist and educator, she founded the New Media Program at University of Texas at San Antonio and served as an assistant professor of art in digital video and new media art at Oakland University, where she was recognized with an Innovations in Teaching award. Raymond is a Film Festival Alliance board member, and a third-generation American of Chinese and Jewish descent. She holds a BFA in film/video from the Rhode Island School of Design, MFA in new genres from the University of Michigan School of Art & Design, and also studied film, video, and new media art at the Art Institute of Chicago.