E.M./Elana Eisen-Markowitz  has worked in NYC public schools as a classroom teacher and community care worker for over twelve years. Now, she is a “restorative justice coordinator” at a public alternative transfer high school that serves incredible young people ages 16-22, and she organizes with  Teachers Unite  to help grow the power of workers, students, and parents at school sites to stand against oppression and collaboratively build the communities we imagine for ourselves.

E.M./Elana Eisen-Markowitz has worked in NYC public schools as a classroom teacher and community care worker for over twelve years. Now, she is a “restorative justice coordinator” at a public alternative transfer high school that serves incredible young people ages 16-22, and she organizes with Teachers Unite to help grow the power of workers, students, and parents at school sites to stand against oppression and collaboratively build the communities we imagine for ourselves.

Rachel Schragis  is a freelance artist and cultural organizer who is honored to work amidst movements and campaigns for racial, economic and climate justice in the U.S.: fabricating art for street mobilizations, leading community art builds, drawing out diagrams of our complex world, and working together with organizers to strategically catalyze the power of art. These days Rachel is collaborating with  AgitArte Culture Workers  to make art for Puerto Rican movements for self-determination and independence, and building a mind map with  Jews for Racial and Economic Justice  about the role of anti-semitism in maintaining white supremacy.

Rachel Schragis is a freelance artist and cultural organizer who is honored to work amidst movements and campaigns for racial, economic and climate justice in the U.S.: fabricating art for street mobilizations, leading community art builds, drawing out diagrams of our complex world, and working together with organizers to strategically catalyze the power of art. These days Rachel is collaborating with AgitArte Culture Workers to make art for Puerto Rican movements for self-determination and independence, and building a mind map with Jews for Racial and Economic Justice about the role of anti-semitism in maintaining white supremacy.

 

We first met about 10 years ago when Elana/E.M. participated in a “Justice & Jewish Thought” study group that was being hosted at Rachel’s house, but we really got to know each other through the New York Collective of Radical Educators when Rachel was working as a teaching artist and E.M. was a high school history teacher.  

A few years ago, E.M. visited Rachel’s studio, saw the venn diagrams Rachel was drawing, then started making her own as a form of journaling and processing the world.  Elana came up with the name "VENT diagrams" to describe the way we both use this form to draw out fresh thinking from seemingly conflicting truths. We decided we wanted to work together to explore and share this efficient and powerful form, and thus @Vent_Diagrams was born.