THEBATHTUBPROJECT

exploring vulnerability and transparency one bath at a time

Tag: Community

Maya

Maya

 

Date of Interview: December 4, 2016

Name: Maya

Age: 22

Pronouns: She/Her or They/Them

Location: Washington, DC

 

How often do you bathe or shower?

I almost never bathe, I’m not a big bath person. Showering really depends, like almost everything else in my life, on how I feel that day. So it’s like, everyday, twice in one day, way too many days in between ::laughs::. It really depends.

If you were an underwater creature, which one would you be?

That’s a really hard question. I love the ocean, but I’m not a huge fan of the things in the ocean ::laughs::. It’s ’cause they really freak me out, I had too many nightmares as a kid about things in the ocean. But I do remember, when I was at the beach when I was young, there were these jellyfish blobs and they’re called moon jellies and I loved that name! They’re clear and they’re squishy and soft so I feel like I would be a moon jellyfish.

What are you passionate about?

Oh my god, too many things. But all of them have one thing in common which is growing. I’m passionate about helping people grow and about relationships and the ways that things interact with one another and the way that things shift over time and how we make space for those kinds of changes. So I guess that roughly translates to… I teach. I make art. I make space for relationships. What am I passionate about… Yeah, growing.

What are your thoughts on relationships? Platonic, sexual or otherwise.

They’re the most important thing to me. All kinds of relationships have equal value to me. Relationships are all about love and love is all about cultivation, so relationships are about growing with one another, tending to one another’s gardens and making space to be beautiful. I think back to this article my friend sent me a long time ago from Dean Spade, something that always stuck out to me is they said to treat your friends as your lovers and to treat your lovers as your friends. I think that sort of symbiotic relationship where everyone is getting the care and attention and investment that they deserve, that’s what relationships are all about to me.

Does that backdrop come from familial ties?

In some ways. I think family is so huge for me, I’ve got this big, huge family and it’s not just my mother and my sister, it’s my housemates, my soul mates, my teammates who are all there for me. All of those who have seen me grow and have grown with me. I’ve been really lucky to meet people who are committed to being there. And to sharing in whatever way they can share. There’s this word, compañerismo, and to be a compañerx to me means to be committed to love and to justice and to dignity. Compañerismo is this tie that holds you, as in a hug, but also holds you accountable to what you believe in and holds your community accountable to that and I think that is where my ideas of community comes from.

What does community mean to you?

Oh man, I just did a whole huge art project around that. I asked so many people what community meant to them and I still don’t know. For myself, what community means… community means… community means… all I have is this feeling. I don’t have the words big enough to explain this deep rootedness of what community means. It’s so within me that words will never bring them out. Yeah ::laughs::.

Zsameria AKA Ziggy

Zsameria AKA Ziggy

 

Date of Interview: November 20, 2016

Name: Zsameria AKA Ziggy

Age: 30

Pronouns: Zsameria

Location: Washington, DC

 

How often do you bathe or shower?

Usually… daily. Mostly in the morning, that’s what wakes me up. I’m not a morning person, so for me to get up I need that water.

If you were an underwater creature which one would you be?

A dolphin. I would totally be a dolphin or an emu. One of the above. Yeah. Dolphins because they’re so loving and they are very family oriented and so are emus. They’re so big, I have a big personality and I’m somewhat tall, I’m 5’6 so I can usually walk into a room and I’m noticed. But I’m such a love bug at the same time.

Are you family oriented?

I am, I am. Even my friends, they become family, very much so. Yeah.

What are you passionate about?

Currently I’m passionate about spreading more love… every where I go. We’re in this state of shock, I believe, after the elections and a lot of people are frightened, scared, terrified, but some people are also elated but in a harmful way. So every morning my, not even mantra, but what I want to put out into the world, is just spreading more love to people no matter what. And also for myself.

Does that correlate with community and family ties?

It correlates with community on the ground level, yes. Since the election I’ve spoken more to youth about what they want to do and the DC protests when it was actually broadcasted I sent it out to all of my friends who are teachers just so they could support the students on that Tuesday or Monday before. I sent it out when I found out on Sunday and a friend of mine, she works directly with high school students and she told me how they were making posters on Monday, they were really able to support the kids because of what I told her, what I sent to her. So I think right now it’s more of focusing on the youth and the elderly and not just being frustrated, but doing something about it. Yeah.

What are you afraid of for the world?

Judgement. For people to be able to judge people without knowing their fucking name. For people to be so angry with external things that they become angry with the people who are just like them but they don’t even fucking know it because their guard is up, or because they see someone’s color or someone’s gender as a weapon. Yeah, definitely.

What do you feel accomplished with?

That I can communicate with people! I have a sense of like, being strong, but I have a humbleness about me. I’m from DC so, we didn’t grow up with much and I’ve been through struggle so I can relate with a whole bunch of people. I’ve had sorrows and hardships and just like… having to grow the fuck up. So I can relate to so many people on that level, so I guess, being compassionate with people. And hopefully they’ll give me the same respect, but if not I’m still gonna have that.

What is something you struggle with?

Hmm… forgiving. Forgiving. I do have that quality of all love, blah blah blah, but once you do some damaged shit I’m like, fuck you, fuck your mother, fuck your grandmother, that whole thing. So I think forgiveness for me and moving past certain things that I have to do the forgiving for myself and not for that other being or for that energy and not taking is so personal. I think that’s it.

What do you think of relationships? Platonic, sexual or otherwise.

What do I think of them? I think they make the world go round. I think it’s very important when you are able to be vulnerable with somebody or intimate with someone. It shows your growth. I don’t think you can grow truly by yourself. By holding on or by always thinking one way and not having that other person or other beings, not even in a sexual thing, just a friendship, having that genuine friendship is very important for growth. And in life, I think we ultimately need growth. Yeah, and each other. I’m an avid believer that hurt people, hurt people and that lovers, love endlessly.

What is something beautiful that you saw today?

Mmmm today… your artwork. Your artwork is very vulnerable and the fact that you want to help people heal and grow through it and show them in a different light and like… draw them, and you be vulnerable yourself with it. That’s beautiful, I’ve been asleep pretty much all day and I had to go to this brunch, I felt like I was rushing all day then I get here and you’re like, “No problem! Hey! Here’s my work”, that was very beautiful.

 

Heather Funk

Heather Funk

 

Date of Interview: November 2, 2016

Name: Heather Funk

Age: 29

Pronouns: She/Her

Location: Washington, DC

 

How often do you bathe or shower?

I dunno, maybe at least once a day, sometimes twice… At least once.

If you were a underwater creature which one would you be?

What do you classify as underwater? Could I be a sea otter? Sea otter. I find that I am cuddly and playful like sea otters and I have a lot of hair on my head so I identify with their double fur layers. I think it would be really great to have armpit pockets, you know they store tools in their armpit pockets? I would love to have something where I could carry a rock around in my armpit. ::Laughs:: It’s so weird but I’ve thought a lot about this before.

What are you passionate about?

That is, I think, something that I’ve been exploring a lot these days because it’s changing… It used to be art. And then it was art and logistics because I have an art and logistics background. I can’t remember a time when creativity wasn’t there. I think since I was a kid, I’ve always loved art and always loved being creative, it was very much encouraged in me so that’s just kid of developed. I think some of it has to do with my zodiac sign, I’m an Aquarius so I’m creative! And stubborn and independent! I think… Creativity, you know, I can’t remember a time when it wasn’t there, when I wasn’t imagining things or like, coming up with new ideas for something. It used to be art related but now it’s kind of changed to being business related, but it’s always been there. But recently I’ve been thinking about how, this is my own personal development I guess… Like, travel has always been something I’ve been really passionate about but, in terms of a career, people talk a lot about passions with a career, and that’s where I’m kind of lost right now and have been thinking about where my passions are going to lead me.

What is your favorite medium?

To work with or to view? Work with, it has to be metal working, something with my hands, like more intense industrial jewelry design, which I haven’t done in a long time. But I think to view… To collect and to purchase it has to be photography. To view in a gallery or in a museum setting, I got to think about that one. It’s kind of like asking what’s your favorite color. You like them all for different reasons, right? I can’t answer that I like them all. Actually that’s a lie, I like installations. Installations have to be my favorite because there’s so much involvement and the viewer is within the piece, right. It’s all about the viewer’s experience.

What are you afraid of for the world?

Oh man… For the world. Maybe the zombie apocalypse. But in all reality, running out of our resources. And how we collectively can come together as a world, as an international community, because I feel that we all have our own thoughts separately, but we need to come together for humanity. With the way things are going now I don’t think it’s possible but you know, communities have been developing over centuries, forever, and so I think the idea of community is growing in terms of numbers now and I don’t think we’re at that point yet but I hope we get there soon. I think it’s possible, just not for a while.

What is something you still struggle with?

Vulnerability. Which is why I’m doing this. Seriously ::laughs::. I read about you guys in a thing by We The People, somebody posted about The Bathtub Project and I was like, “Cool! I like this idea!” And so the idea of being vulnerable, there’s a stigma of weakness involved. But in a lot of ways you’re a lot stronger for being vulnerable and being openly vulnerable. I’ve been coming to terms with that in the last year or two and that’s why… Vulnerability! That’s why I’m doing this.

What do you think of relationships? Platonic, sexual and otherwise.

Let’s see… Relationships. I think they’re very important and integral to human development and to human happiness. I think if you’re alone, even if you’re isolated, everyone needs some relationship in some compactly. I very much value my platonic relationships, my friendships. That’s something that this last year, I spent a lot of time this last year or two of musing on my relationships with men in a romantic setting, but your friends… They don’t owe you anything. You’re not having sex, most times, with your friends right? So a friendship is the purest form of a relationship in some ways and if you can accept each other for exactly who you are and love each other for who you are in a friendship, that is the highest, purest form of relationship that I think there is out there. At the same time, this other level though, being in a romantic relationship you have the benefit of this other person sticking by your side who wants to be with you and you have that sexual component which is always fun. So… Those are my thoughts on relationships.

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