top of page


"The long story of this work is the relationship we all have to trauma. How trauma shakes us and shapes us and seems to change who we are at our very core.  How trauma forces to bend or break- to adapt and leave behind that which we used to be.


The short story isn't nearly so melodramatic and meta, it's the true story of two queer art makers, who became friends while working for minimum wage at a local Oakland cafe. Together they washed dishes and sold overpriced cappuccinos and in between talked about everything; the importance of naming one's self, class privilege and art making, how "queer" is a verb, gender and safety and really just everything you'd imagine two queer folks of color might discuss to stay safe and sane in white heterolandia. And one day, while we were talking about coping, about survival, about resilience , epli turned to TLMVJ and said "why do you go by the name Barbara at work?"  and thus 5FacesProject was born. In that moment epli realized that between them was an unmade work of art that combined her passion for photo research with TLMVJ’s brilliant mind, and all the characters living inside."

bottom of page