Collaborative Projects

Woke Wombyn

Woke Wombyn is a collaborative art project to map the medicine and cosmologies of radical wombyn transforming themselves and current paradigm through plant, spirit and decolonizing medicine. Each participant is portraited by Sarita in inks and watercolors with their handle, the food and herbs resonating with them at this time, and the areas of their life they focus on for balance and personal bliss. The project is ongoing and evolving according to the conversations and situations of each collaborator. The first image featured here is Patty D. Guzman, "Woke Witch" on Instagram @getting.woke

Puppet Squad

Puppet Squad is a collaborative of artists generating live performance with puppets, music and dance to entertain water protectors, protestors, and/or rallying advocates for wombyn's, water's, earth's, LGBTQ, immigrants' and all other rights. They originally appeared in December 2016 at the #NODAPL March and Rally in Downtown LA and will appear at various upcoming events this spring.

The Love in Our Belly

The Love in Our Belly  was a 2-person show at Visitor Welcome Center, conceived by Iris Y. Hu and David Bell to feature the work of Sarita Dougherty and artist laub in the memory of Emi Kuriyama. Shown here is an installation view of Sarita's banner and floor mat for marches and Moon Visioning, both of which have been activated in ceremony and protest. See more images from the show and read Iris' poem here.

Murals by Champrita

Sarita Dougherty and artist Champoy Lim collaborate on public artworks to inspire the public, transform worldviews and bring creative medicine to people and place. This mural, entitled, The Ancestors Returned with All their Medicine was painted in the summer of 2016 at The Compound in Baltimore, Maryland. The crow painting was already painted on the wall by a previous tenant. See more of Champoy's work at champchampchampoy.com

Lidagat Luna and the Birth Story

In 2016, Sarita Dougherty gave birth to her and Champoy Lim's baby, Lidagat Luna Dougherty Lim. Lida's birth and all of the medicine and synchronicity surrounding her mark the end of a 6 year visioning and new chapter in Sarita and Champoy's lives. Sarita wrote the birth story in five sections of the themes and medicine that brought the Luna to her fullness; White Rocks, The Pink Sheet, #3, The Deer, and The Moon. Contact Sarita Dougherty or the Visitor Welcome Center to order a copy.

Cura Tierra Cura

Cura Tierra Cura was a collective installation and performance at Human Resources, Los Angeles, on May 5th, 2016, as part of the Decolonize LA series. Cura Tierra Cura articulated critical and poetic views of the current dis*locate landscape in Los Angeles; spheres of influence giving voice to some and none to others. The evening generated dialogue with participants around gentrification, people's roles, how the land and its flora and fauna are affected, if a dialogue can exist between all parties, and facilitated vision-building for the future. This participatory installation and performance shared tools for healing while seeking balance.

Dream Space

Sarita Dougherty, Janie Olivas and Cynthia Rodriguez performed for the Winter Solstice, 2015, as Dreamspace. This soundbath and installation hosted a series of elemental vibrations to bathe and nourish the spirit.  They performed as part of a community performance and healing to support J de la Tierra transform into Tezcatlipoca, witness the dance of Joy Anderson and Johanna Iraheta, hosted by artist Sandra de la Loza.

Nature's Farm Camp

Nature's Farm camp is a week-long, sleep away camp where kids step out of their every day and immerse themselves in nature – growing, cooking, making, building and exploring, created by Tim Magner and Elena Marre.  Campers do with their hands, head and heart. In the process they discover more about life and themselves, all while having a blast with new friends in the great outdoors. Sarita Dougherty and Champoy Lim taught site-specific art and woodworking for the camp in 2015 on Nance Klehm's rehabilitating meadow and wetlands habitat.

The Willow Bundle

Marcia Hunter Estrada and her sisters are in the Tule River band of Yokuts, living and surviving settler-colonialism at the Tule River for hundreds of years. For 25 years, Marcia leads a Women's Retreat there, and encourages participants to maintain close regular and spiritual ties with their female friends who can support them through the ups and downs of life. This "Willow Bundle" and the women's retreat have been an endless source of support and inspiration for Sarita Dougherty, a proud member of her Los Angeles Willow Bundle. They meet monthly for fires, healings, and moon cycles.

Con/Safos

C/S or Con/Safos by Rafa Esparza is a site-specific sculpture and year long revolving installation at the Bowtie Project. Over the summer of 2014 Esparza and his father handmade 1500 adobe bricks on site as part of Esparza’s Bowtie Project performance building. a simulacrum of power. In a continued exploration of the site, Esparza used these bricks to build 2 intersecting adobe walls. Throughout the course of a year graffiti artists, painters and sculptors have been invited to design, paint, and build onto the surface of Con/Safos. Iris Yirei Hu and Sarita Dougherty were the first artists invited to paint the walls. Sarita's mural was called Las Palmas y sus Barbas, a meditation on the riparian ecology of the site and entities weilding power over there.

The DIY PhD

In 2014, David Whitaker and Sarita started a DIY PhD for themselves, desiring a rigorous and creative higher education program without the material and disciplinary contraints of an institution. This way of learning is an alternative to Western institutional education that separates mind and body. DIY Education can incorporate ancestral, intuitive, spiritual, earth-based, and body-centered ways of knowing. Sarita and David have facilitated courses for new cohorts, inspired a DIY MFA Bay Area, and created an illuminated manuscript based on what they learned. More information here.

The Postnational Department of Transcultural Youth

The Postnational Department of Transcultural Youth is the degree-granting department for Sarita Dougherty's DIY PhD. Started in 2012, this creative thinktank sponsers projects and generates inspiring pedagogies for re-imagining a decolonized, pluralistic and radically sustainable future. Email thepdty@gmail.com for more information.

Mountain Medicine for the Los Angeles Floodplain

In the summer of 2014, Sarita created a traveling art exhibit and workshop series called Mountain Medicine for the Los Angeles Floodplain. The mobile show visited the Santa Monica Museum of Art; the Redpath Museum in Montreal, Canada; Body Actualized Studio in Brooklyn, New York; The Compound in Baltimore, Maryland; and The Spot in Boyle Heights; East Los Angeles. The show's programming included making mandalas with Native Plants, a seed exchange, a video screening and community healing, and a talk about painting ethno-ecology.

Urban Homestead

Sarita and now her partner Champoy Lim are continually learning how to live with a more sustainable footprint on Pachamama, or the Earth. We study and practice water conservation systems, composting, native gardening, plant medicine, green building, semi-permanent dwellings, and passive solar energy. The habitat becomes the site of study and muse for Sarita's portraits of place.

Clases sin Paredes

While at Escuela Popular in San Jose, Sarita began teaching extracurricular outdoors programs for grades K-8, in order to bring the urban students into nature for creative and academic learning. These monthly trips were collaborations with the classroom teachers, as well as with the California Native Plant Foundation, who also funded Clases sin Paredes to install a native garden and water-catchment rain garden on the School's campus to learn about droughts, plant-systems and wildlife conservation. The science classes additionally held classes there.

Español a través del Arte

Escuela Popular, a critical-pedagogy learning institution for first and second-general ESL learners in San Jose, California, hired Sarita to teach Español a través del Arte, a course for Middle School Students that would teach written and spoken Spanish using Visual Art. Sarita taught there from 2012-2013.

The Circle inside the Square

Sarita Dougherty's UCLA Thesis exhibit at the New White Gallery was called "The Circle Inside the Square," an installation to transform the institutional white box and its meanings into a decolonized space full of texture, color, story-telling and ethno-ecology. The installation's center became a teaching circle with mats for participants to sit on and hosted a community seed exchange as well as a Critical Pedagogy and Dismantling Racism workshop co-taught by Randi Burley for UCLA Graduate students.

Red Hawk Sighting

In Spring 2013, the Los Angeles State Historic Park, under the direction of Superintendant Sean Woods, razed Dolphin totems erected in ceremony by the Tongva community, indigenous to Los Angeles, uprooted a native forest, and destroyed 2 acres of native habitat- with pollinators, bird, reptile and endangered plant life- to remake a manicured and gentrifying version of their 11 acre park. Sarita Dougherty has footage of community members responding to the planned devastation of this sacred site by interrupting the "ground-breaking" for the new park in a performace of the Red Hawk, circling and mourning the land and its ecosystem.

En el Tiempo de la Luna

Sarita Dougherty, Zena Zendejas and Cynthia Rodriguez created original music and filmed En El Tiempo de la Luna, a 30-minute digital film documenting their personal and collective journeys into decolonizing their minds, bodies and experiences in Los Angeles. You can see the video here .

Mini-Yurt

In 2013, Sarita Dougherty and Johanna Iraheta created a mini-yurt by harvesting local bamboo, cutting it and securing it to create a travelling intentional space for community use. It has been "Yangna," a site to enter and remember the indigenous place that is now called Los Angeles and meditate on the preservation of a native garden and Tongva totems that were slated for destruction; a shade-spot for dialogue with the LA Rooted Summer Camp; and an installation for community members to place testimonies about displacement and gentrification.

Nepantla Performance

In 2011 at the May Day/ Immigrant Rights parade and rally in Los Angeles, Sarita Dougherty and Zena Zendejas found themselves in between the sanctioned Latino/a Democrat Party-led march, and the Zapatista-Worker's Union led march, performing their lived experience of Nepantla, or the space-in-between. Nepantla is a concept created by author Gloria Anzaldua, as the experience of living in two worlds at once, or neither. Sarita and Zena dressed up as their colonial and indigenous selves, representing Spain with Bolivia and Mexico, respectively. They marched for Pachamama, or Mother Earth.

Everything is Medicine

In 2010, Olivia Chumacero began teaching her philosophy, Everything is Medicine, to groups of eager students in downtown Los Angeles at a Native Garden in the Anabolic Monument, an art project of Lauren Bon. Chumacero taught the course with hands-on tending to and use of native plants for food, medicine and culture. Though the garden is no longer there, its seeds and its teachings live on in her over 200 students and continues in her site-specific workshops today. See everythingismedicine.wordpress.com for more information.

Art and Nature Summer Camps

The Art and Nature collective taught three summer camps, in 2011, 2012, and 2013. Each camp was a three-day collaboration with youTHink, and was creatively installed each day at a natural site in Los Angeles. The youth created and learned during the three days while eating healthy meals prepared by chef Frances Garrettson. The camps culminated in an art exhibit and public celebration.

Art and Nature Quarterly Workshops

Art and Nature is an Artist Collective teaching and learn at sites where the urban landscape of Los Angeles meets waterways, parks, empty lots and gardens; both wild and tended to. Started in 2010 by Sarita Dougherty and David Whitaker, the collective grew to include artists Katie Bachler, Cynthia Rodriguez, Beatriz Rodriguez, Brittany Green, Randi Burley, Gerardo Monterrubio, Yajaira Villareal, Eugene Lopez, Karla Aguiniga, and more, many of whom got their first teaching experience with the collective. Art and Nature's free workshops for youth taught site-specific visual, performance and folk art forms as well as permaculture, native gardening, and design. We served over 900 youth.

Musical Fables

Sarita was one of 11 artists chosen to illustrate Robert Cofresi's children's stories compiled in the book, Bellows: Fables from the Musical Underground. Sarita created original watercolor and collage illustrations for the story "Basement Hippie Camp," a tale about live music and rabbit hippies living underground. Published in 2012.

Spacial Reconstruction

In this series of artist take-overs of the now closed Found Gallery in Los Angeles, California, Sarita recreated her experience of living in Mexico City, with a Chapultapec Park Castle recreation, a bedroom of dreamlike video and altar installations with Susannah Simpon, and a living room and performance space with recordings and a live show during the opening in August 2008.

Pinche Gringo and the Lovely Sarita

One man band Joshua Johnson plus Sarita on vocals and percussion. Pinche Gringo and the Lovely Sarita played in Mexico City with Bloodshot Bill, forming The Half-ways, and toured across the Eastern, New England and Southern States between 2006 and 2009. "Space Girl" was the duo's hit, a cover of an early American Folk song.

Los Artistas

In 2004, Sarita started an arts program for bilingual and biculutural youth at The ArtsCenter in Carrboro, North Carolina, called Los Artistas. Los Artistas combined critical pedagogy, art education, and art therapy to generate a creative community of first-generation Middle and High School students from Mexico living in North Carolina. With Teaching Assistants Katie Almiral and Rolando Cerda, our weekly program generated art shows and murals. In 2007 while living in Greensboro, North Carolina, Sarita started a second chapter of Los Artistas at The Center for Visual Artists, which continues today.