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The Somatic Stories Project
Watch A Short Video Exploring This Exhibition
Original Opening: March 6, 2020 | Closed: September 26, 2020

Video Shot By: Sam Johnson

The Somatic Stories Project

Curated by Gabrielle S. Clark, Nakesha V. Moore, MD, Makeba Rainey & Tien Sydnor-Campbell, MS

Original Opening: March 6, 2020
Closed For COVID-19: March 11, 2020
Re-Opened: September 12, 2020
Closed: September 26, 2020


The Somatic Stories Project utilizes individual narratives, photography, visual art, and wellness workshops to center Black women and femmes’ knowledge about healing trauma with bodywork (therapeutic rituals that involve working with the human body to promote holistic well-being). This exhibition includes narratives and visual art by Gabrielle S. Clark, visual art by Makeba “KEEBS” Rainey, wellness workshops provided by Nakesha V. Moore, MD and Tien Sydnor-Campbell, MS, CMT, and the embodied wisdom of Shakuwra Gay, Avéz, and Ashley Davis.


Gabrielle S. Clark is a writer, visual artist, and educator. The Philadelphia native primarily uses storytelling and photography to explore themes of embodied trauma and everyday resistance in Black life and culture. Gabrielle created The Somatic Stories Project to preserve Black women and femmes’ knowledge of healing from trauma and to curate spaces for Black creatives and wellness workers to collaborate, share resources, and build community through interdisciplinary work that centers our wellness and liberation. Gabrielle is a Leeway Foundation Grant recipient (ACG ’19) and Bartol Foundation/Small But Mighty Arts Teaching Artist Grant recipient (2019). Gabrielle’s photography, journalism, and poetry has been published in various outlets including The Philadelphia Inquirer, Travel Noire, The Hellebore, The Atlanta Black Star, A Gathering Together Literary Journal, and For Harriet.
More Info: thegabrielleclark.com

Dr. Nakesha V. Moore, an Afro-Latina born and raised in NY, has always shown an avid interest in health. She is fully committed to educating and empowering marginalized communities with the necessary resources to help them create and sustain a culture of wellness. Inspired by a quote from Congressperson Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, “We open doors so others can walk through them,” Dr. Moore has shifted her focus to making yoga and meditation more accessible to youth. In doing so, she is able to help them build confidence and become more resilient as they navigate their everyday lives. Nakesha strives to provide our future leaders with these powerful tools to improve neighborhoods and create positive change.  Nakesha enjoys spending quality time with family and friends, traveling, fashion, the arts as well as all things related to wellness!

Makeba Rainey’s creative practice focuses on building community and what that looks like. For her, community is an extension of family. By centering her work around social justice, specifically in regard to Black Americans, community becomes the key to liberation. Her artwork taps into aspects of the Black community, merging the old with the new by re-envisioning the ancestors through new media and creating space for young creatives to build and sustain themselves. Although a lot of her work is local to Harlem, she creates bonds with the larger Black community through her web-based artist collective incorporating the themes of social justice movements like Black Lives Matter. Originally from Harlem, New York, Makeba is a self-taught artist best known for her digital collage portraits of contemporary and historical Black icons. Makeba an internationally-exhibited artist, a 2017 Create Change Fellow with the Laundromat Project, a 2018 member of Vox Populi gallery in Philadelphia, a 2018 CFEVA Fellow, a 2018 Season III NARS resident Artist, and an Absolut Art artist.
More Info: voxpopuligallery.org/artists/makeba-rainey

Tien Sydnor-Campbell, MS, CMT is a medically retired, body-centered psychotherapist and as a certified massage therapist with 25 years of clinical experience. A specialist in recognition that the body and mind are not separate in health/care, Tien’s role has been to empower clients in managing psychosomatic imbalances. Counseling certifications are Trauma-informed and Trauma-focused methodologies and Bodywork certifications were in Neuromuscular, Craniosacral, Reflexology, Aromatherapy, and as a Reiki Master. The diagnosis of Autoimmune Rheumatoid Disease, being a lifelong volunteer / advocate, and efforts to educate the public about the unique stigmas and difficulties that people face in health care (physical &mental / emotional) and in social settings. Tien is familiar, as a therapist and now as a patient, with the symbiotic nature of optimal wellness against a backdrop of chronic physical and/or mental illness. Tien is a vocal advocate, published author (non-fiction, research and urban self-help genres), sometime blogger and speaker.
More Info: tiensydnorcampbell.com