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Eric Wilson

Core In-Training

Eric (he/him) is a queer descendant of Appalachian shape shifters, downriver rats, and Bavarian immigrants. He studies his heritage, while actively practicing decolonization as a way of life — to uncouple the ties to his own colonial ancestry, while understanding his complicity and making amends. His life found him on Turtle Island, on Anishinaabe land in Waawiyaatanong (Detroit, MI), He also spent part of his childhood on the lush rolling foothills of Muscogee land, in Tvlwv Haco (Birmingham, AL). He currently lives with his partner, Kurt, who invited him to join the Detroit Filipino Supper Club, where he has learned, shared stories with food, and listened intently to the Detroit Filipino community, which has welcomed him into their hearts, as much as he has welcomed them all into his.

He sings to plants, other than human kin, the sun and air, mostly off key. Lately the whole world has been singing back. Together with his partner he cultivates native flowers, and builds garden beds. Together, they harvest squash, tomatoes, eggplants, yard-long beans, and much more. He watches bees sleep in blossoms at twilight. As the days shorten and the plants begin their time of rest, the last of the food is harvested, carefully canned and stored away. This rhythm has become a guide for living in ways that don’t push constant productivity. This active resistance to our capitalist society is a practice Eric works at every day, with varying degrees of success.

Eric is an amateur athlete, learning to embrace sport and competition as a way to become more in tune with his physical body. He plays ice hockey — a game originally known as ricket, played by the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia. Honoring the Indigenous roots of the game, he aims to be a better sport and encourages others to play, learn the history and challenge the mainstream whitewashed narrative of the sport.

 

He uses his education in communication design to tell visual stories with an eye toward crafting accessible work that can engage communities.

 

Eric has worked with the Democratic Socialists of America on bilingual poster campaigns, the STAMPS Gallery in Ann Arbor on exhibit design, Eastern Market on visual design for multiple nonprofit events, and The Guardian and Votebeat on editorial illustrations. He has designed a font based on study of regional hand-painted signs, to capture the vestiges being erased in pursuit of progress. He has exhibited work at College for Creative Studies, and 27th Letter Books.

 

He champions the democratization of visual design. Through creative practice we can begin to imagine new ways of living. We can dismantle gate-kept tuition costs and Eurocentric design histories to encourage all people to make and find beauty while honoring the visual culture of their ancestors.

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