fostering hope and weaving identity through documentary storytelling

Photo courtesy of Zenith Richards

Alesandra Zsiba is a documentary storyteller, dance artist, and a poet at heart. As Founding Artist of The Identity Project, Alesandra's pedagogical approach celebrates educating the whole student, and introduces the arts as a method of cultivating self-made meaning in learning and life. Through documentary photography and poetry workshops, and spoken word and movement metaphor workshops, her students are given the opportunity to investigate their lives and selves in a safe, creative space. The active creation of this space leads students find that their voices are worthy of being heard, worthy of the ultimate ear, worthy of a Stage. Ultimately, Alesandra guides students through the process of building a creative family, taking risks, becoming proud, surprising themselves, and learning to honor the seat of their originality. 

Alesandra has studied with and been on the staff of nationally recognized arts organizations such as the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center, the National Theater Institute, Duke Center for Documentary Studies, Santa Fe Photographic Workshops, and the School at The International Center of Photography. Alesandra graduated from Oberlin College with a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Performance, and is proud to have served a year in AmeriCorps. Presently, Alesandra is a Master's candidate at the Bread Loaf School of English, Middlebury College and a fellow-in-residence with the Women's International Study Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Alesandra is currently partnering with the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture and the Indian Education Division of New Mexico's Public Education Department to launch a summer pilot of The Identity Project specifically designed to cultivate empowerment and illuminate the voices of urban Indigenous youth.

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