Design for Intimacy


EVENING (7:00 pm - 10:00 pm)

The Backlot Studio, 1015 W Kirkland Ave #301 Nashville, TN 37216

EXHIBITION // Immersive Visual and Poetic Installation

Hosted by The Sacral Project

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An immersive film screening and poetic installation exploring sexuality, intimacy, and connection through the experiences of Black and Brown artists.

The series explores a number of themes, including race, gender, religion, education, technology, and more through short films by 20+ filmmakers and poets, archival footage, and animation. The screening will be followed by a brief conversation moderated by Ristina Gooden, involving Tyquan Morton, Eugene Johnson, Mariah Seales, Jakia Propst, Joseph Patrick, and Simba Alik.

The event will also feature an exhibition by Nashville-based visual artists Robert Fairley III and Mariah Seales.

The screening will start promptly at 7:30. Free parking is available at the venue.

Sponsored by The Backlot Studio, Safelight Imaging, Cape Coast Co., Better Than Booze, and The City Juicery.

The erotic functions…in several ways, and the first is providing the power which comes from sharing deeply any pursuit with another person. The sharing of joy, whether physical, emotional, psychic, or intellectual, forms a bridge between the sharers which can be the basis for understanding much of what is not shared between them, and lessens the threat of their difference” – Audre Lorde


Tyquan Morton (Host)

Tyquan Morton (he/him) is the Creative Producing Director of The Sacral Project. Morton’s current work revolves around domestic living and how it impacts Black sexuality and intimacy. As curator of The Sacral Project, Morton hopes “there is a new definition and understanding around the Erotic and intimacy and how this can be used to reach more self and community awareness”. Morton’s work has been published in Wussy Mag, Good Juju Review: An Anthology, Fresh Ink Anthology, and a self-published chapbook, Remembering Pluto.

Ristina Gooden (Moderator)

Ristina Gooden (she/her) is a pleasure advocate who focuses her work on creating new frameworks of sacred rhetoric that interweave pleasure, agency, and wholeness for Black women and seeks to engage pleasure in new and life-giving ways to counteract the narrative that pleasure is excessive, unproductive, and sinful. Ristina is currently a doctoral student in the Graduate Department of Religion at Vanderbilt University.

Mariah Seales

Mariah Seales (she/her) is a queer, Nashville-based artist known for her work using acrylic mediums to create pixelated images. After leaving the music industry in 2020, her earlier artwork focused on album covers as inspiration. Playfully insinuating that when you know a body of music well enough, you can recognize it, even while out of focus. As she’s evolved in her technique, the artist is expanding the scope of ‘out of focus works’ in a way that captures life from her unique point of view.

Joseph Patrick

Joseph Patrick (he/him), born in Nashville, Tennessee, Joseph holds a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from Tennessee State University. He cites this indoctrination to his obsession with light in both its physical and artistic properties to create photographs ranging from stark, contrasty, and dense to soft and sometimes moody editorial portraits. Influenced by photographers such as Carrie Mae Weems, Tim Walker and Herb Ritts, Joseph aims to merge imaginative storytelling and physical beauty with surreal and absurdist ideas. Patrick is best known for his attention to light and form in figure and editorial portraiture photography.

Eugene Johnson

Eugene Johnson (he/him) is a filmmaker native to Nashvile and often serves as a Director of Photography in multiple music videos, short films, and narratives as well as lighting design and sound engineering both on set and in live performance. Johnson has a bag of tricks consisting changing and evolving. He also serves as the Technical Production Manager for The Sacral Project.

Jakia Propst

Jakia Propst (she/her) is a Black, queer Nashville-based multimedia artist, poet, and activist from Hickory, NC. Her works often edify the vulnerability that comes with navigating sexuality, trauma, relationships, culture and intersectional identity. Her beginnings as an artist are connected to both theatre and spoken word, which she saw as the catalyst for various modes of self-expression. She is currently finishing her first poetry chapbook, facilitating community creative workshops, and curating spaces for intersectional Black identities both in person and through her writing.

Simba Alik

Simba Alik, also known as Simba The Poet, is a Nashville-based spoken word artist and communications professional. Simba is involved in his community as a mentor, workshop leader, and organizer. He is most known for his contribution to the movement for Black and trans lives through his poetry. Simba has been consulted by organizations on topics including justice, ED&I, social media advocacy, and public relations. He has a B.S. in Journalism and Sociology, a Master’s in Organizational Leadership, and is pursuing an M.S. in Public Relations.