Annie Gonzaga is a black, lesbian, mother who grew up in the favela in Salvador Bahia, known as one of the most racist and most dangerous cities for LBTQ people in the world. She is a practitioner of Candomblé and lives in the outskirts of Salvador. About her creative practice, Annie states, “I have been resisting and practicing survival for the last 500 years through all my ancestors who have preceded me.” She began to draw at a young age in response to the overt policing of her community and the violence that surrounded her. Annie states, “through art I can understand myself as whole. I can’t publicly assume my religious identity because the public space is dangerous, nor leave my lesbianism locked in the closet because I can suffer lesbophobia on the street, much less undress my color, to finally be accepted, loved and then love myself. These are identities that are with me all the time and in everything I do. And through artivism I could see myself. To create an epistemology, through our ancestral heritages, is to glimpse the Afrofuturist black identity, diasporic utopia re-cognizing our cosmologies and identities. And all this is what I try to express in my art whether on paper or on a wall.”
Annie Gonzaga is a black, lesbian, mother who grew up in the favela in Salvador Bahia, known as one of the most racist and most dangerous cities for LBTQ people in the world.