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Welcome R’Bonney Nola: 2021 Fall Artist in Residency Winner

Houston, Texas – Zócalo Apartments is proud to announce that R’Bonney Nola is the Fall 2021 winners of its second annual Artist-in-Residency program. Nola is a fashion designer and textile artist from Houston, Texas running an eco-conscious clothing line and that merges together textile manipulation, sustainability, and design. Nola traces her inspiration to growing up shopping at vintage thrift stores with her mother which led to her purchasing secondhand pieces and re-constructing them into new innovative designs. She studied Fashion Design and Fibers at UNT and learned to merge textile art with apparel design by transforming fabric through dying, screen printing, weaving, quilting, sculpting, heat pressing and other means.

Nola’s fabrics are sourced by recycling pre-existing clothing, scraps, or leftover bolts of fabric, modeling a low-pollution design process in stark contrast to much of the fashion industry,

Nola is also a generous teacher and has offered sewing classes through the MAKR Collective in a collaborative program between Houston non-profit design house Magpies & Peacocks and the Mayor’s Office of Human Trafficking and Domestic Violence (MOHTDV).

“We are delighted to include R’Bonney Nola in the 2021 Zócalo program,” said Sophia Collier.  “In addition to her amply talent as a textile artist, she brings an interesting economic dimension to her art. By creating a company to sell her fashions as well as teach others earn money through textiles, she is fostering, beautiful human scale art and craft in an age of highly polluting, fast fashion.” Collier continued, “Her art is not only in the physical forms she creates, but also in her larger process of engagement with the market.”

This year’s judges included: Houston interdisciplinary artist, curator, and current Zócalo artist-in-residence, Theresa Escobedo; public visual artist, curator, and muralist, Angel Quesada; and Sixto Wagan, the inaugural Director for the Center for Art and Social Engagement (CASE) at the University of Houston. 

About Zócalo Artist in Residency

TheZócalo Artist-in-Residency is one of the nation’s first artist residency programs sponsored by a multifamily real estate firm. It is the first in Houston and provides a fully funded artist residency dedicated to building community through dynamic art and ideas.

Located on the beautiful residential campus of Zócalo Apartments in the Spring Branch area of Houston, Texas Zócalo’s Artist-in-Residency program provides a single one-year and two six-month residencies per year. Applicants apply to a selection panel of local artists, curators, and arts administrators and winners are granted fully funded housing in a private apartment studio, a monthly working stipend, need-based project funding, and hands-on support from the Zócalo property staff.

With a focus on the intersection of art and community enrichment, the program strives to strengthen the connection between residents and the living spaces they share through the power of art and creativity. By granting artists stable housing and various forms of financial and artistic support, the program aims to create an inspiring and supportive environment of creative inquiry.  

“The Zócalo Campus is in a magic place in Houston where Rick Lowe, one of our most iconic arts leaders had his beginnings and it continues to be an area where artists will have the opportunity to develop and thrive.” – Chula Reynolds, Zócalo