Anel I. Flores is a lesbian, queer, woman story maker. Her work manifests as drawings, stories, jewelry, paintings, stickers y mas; as a continuation and evolution of the conversations started by the Xicana/x movement in art and literature, now infused by latinx, transfeminism, intersectionality, queer politics and resistance. She is an MFA in Creative Writing, Co-Reviewer and Co-Committee Member of El Mundo Zurdo, Board Member of Macondo Writers, Founder of Queer Voices Speak-Out, Co-Founder of LezRideSA, and member of the Mayor’s LGBTQIA Task Force. Flores awards include the Catalyst for Change Award, Best Poet Award, Women’s Advocate of the Year, the Nebrija Creadores Award from Universidad de Alcala de Henares-Madrid, Spain, Best Of San Antonio Local Author, Chingona in Literature, the Ancinas Award at Squaw Valley, the NALAC Fund for the Arts Award, the Accion Women Inspiring Women Award, and more.
san antonio, tx | art/books/Jewelry
What does a feminist economy mean to you?
Feminist economy reminds me of my great grandmother, Abuelita Pepita. When my father was living with her and the rest of their siblings on a small rancho, en El Huarache in the 1940’s, she used to make a meal of maiz, tortillas, frijoles and other foods they grew on their land. During the times their crops yielded well and the sun was about to set, she would call my father, as a young boy inside from work or play. When he arrived, she had set up for him large platos of food. Mi Bis - Abuela Pepita would order him to deliver the platos to neighboring families, as well as to her own parents and her Comadres. There was no room to doubt whether or not the gift was going to be accepted, or no question if they were going to even like the food. Mi abuelita wasn’t inundated with questions like, “what if I bother them,” or “what if they feel obligated to bring us food?” or “What if they think we are showing off?” And the familia that received the gifts welcomed food, also without doubts or questions of why Abuelita Pepita was being so nice, or what does she want. She just existed to share, to support each other, to give, to live off the land, to teach the young to also carry on the tradition. When she had abundance everyone had abundance and when she didn’t, she asked for help. Working within a feminist economy means to focus on best practices towards having a gender neutral society, adamantly including the transgender, gender queer and gender-non-binary people; as well as equitable resources, offerings and practices for black, indigenous, latinx, chicanx, and people of color. With my Abuelita Pepita’s attitude of supporting the land, sharing abundance, teaching the young, and reciprocal relationships, we can all work in a feminist economy.
How does your work uplift your community?
My work manifests itself as drawings, chapters, and poems, as a continuation and evolution of the conversations started by the Xicana movement in art and literature, now infused by latinx, transfeminism, intersectionality, queer politics and resistance. As a cultural producer, I am driven by a sense of urgency to record and create queer visual and literary work as a continuous reflection and questioning of self-representation, aiming at discovering and recovering the history, dynamics, and complexities of relationships with others, self, memory, future the present.