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A Cajun Louisiana native, Mant Bares earned her MFA in fiction from the Helen Zell Writers’ Program. Mant’s fiction has appeared in Beloit Fiction Journal, Porter House Review, and Fugue, and her nonfiction is forthcoming in Washington Square Review. She has been awarded the Sewanee Writers’ Conference Tennessee Williams Scholarship, the Frederick Busch Prize in Fiction, and the Porter House Review Editor’s Prize in Fiction, judged by Carmen Maria Machado. Her poetry, found under the name Samantha Bares, has most recently appeared in Yalobusha Review and is forthcoming in Guesthouse and OxMag. Recently, her novel-in-progress The Trouble You Do Not Name was shortlisted for the Faulkner Society’s William Faulkner – William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition. Now living in Baden-Württemberg, Germany, Mant’s work is supported by the Elizabeth George Foundation.
Cameron Meade is best known for his painted portraits. Cameron has attended Trestle Artist Residency, the Vermont Studio Center, The Millay Colony for the Arts, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and Monson Arts. In 2019 he participated in a group exhibition as a finalist for Miami University’s Young Painter’s Competition, juried by Barry Schwabsky. He was also profiled as a RISING ARTIST by ALL ARTS. He is a 2018 graduate of the MFA program in Painting at Pratt Institute and in 2013 received his B.A. in Psychology and B.S. in Physics from Stanford University, with a Proficiency Notation in Mandarin. He has spent the past thirteen years working for Starting Right, Now (SRN), a nonprofit organization located in his hometown of Tampa, FL. SRN’s comprehensive program ends the generational cycle of homelessness and poverty for unaccompanied youth. SRN was recognized as a CNN Hero in 2019. Cameron’s art practice is largely inspired by his work at SRN, through which he has cultivated a large unconventional family and realized the immense value of intimate connections.
Being a native of West Baltimore has taught artist Ernest Shaw the meaning of perseverance, community and integrity. As a product of Baltimore City Public Schools, Baltimore School for the Arts, Morgan State University and Howard University Shaw recognizes the importance of using his skills and talents for the betterment of others, not simply for his own self-aggrandizement. For Ernest, teaching is also an artistic medium.