I wear a lot of hats (and also wigs).
By day, I'm an Assistant Professor in Public & Applied Humanities at the University of Arizona. I work primarily in digital media, communication, and queer/trans studies, and I'm particularly interested in critical approaches to data, algorithms, AI, and "new media" arts and activism. My current book project theorizes queer/trans strategies of countering surveillance capitalism, particularly in the context of social media and everyday technologies, by looking at drag queens, Homobiles, witchcraft, and gay hanky codes. I've also published other academic work on drag pedagogy and drag performance on screen. I received my PhD in Media, Culture, and Communication at NYU, and finished my dissertation with the generous support of a Charlotte W. Newcombe Dissertation Fellowship.
By night, I'm a drag queen, and have performed at venues ranging from San Francisco's legendary Stud bar to SFMOMA, and Stanford University to Saturday Night Live. I helped found the #MyNameIs campaign that fought Facebook's so-called "real names" policy, and have published under my drag name in venues like Wired, them., Salon, and The Guardian. I'm a board member for Drag Queen Story Hour, and wrote two children's books.
In between, I'm also a visual and performance artist and work with photo, video, programming, craft, installation, and tactical intervention. My work has explored topics like gentrification and San Francisco's Google Buses, tech's haunting nostalgia for the aesthetics of the early AIDS epidemic, and the loss of personal archives. In 2020, I was a fellow in the Eyebeam Rapid Response for a Better Digital Future program, and I have received grants from the MAP Fund and ONE Archives, among others. In 2019, I co-curated an exhibition on tech and failure for ApexArt. I have an MFA in Digital Arts & New Media from UC Santa Cruz.
In past lives, I've professionally built websites (and sometimes still do), managed nonprofit strategic communications, developed curriculum, and taught photography, video production, and arts+crafts. I have weaknesses for musical theater, coconut-based ice cream, and cats.
I currently live in Tucson. Feel free to refer to me by he, she, or they pronouns.