Trans People Exist in the Future
Art and poetry celebrating trans resilience
Trans people of color deserve a world of safety, support and love. Imagine this world through our collection of original art and poetry. Free to download, the zine includes ten poems, selected art from seven years of the Trans Day of Resilience art project, and prompts to fuel your own dreaming.
Illustration with the text: “Trans People Exist in the Future” against a brightly colored pink, purple and orange background with stars and clouds. Below are silhouettes of trees and two Black trans kids looking up at the sky. One holds binoculars and one has a glowing red heart in their chest.
“I like making art that has starry skies because I associate starscapes with being extremely old but also with the future and everything undiscovered that we don't yet know. I wanted this poster to be a reminder of the way that trans people are like that. No matter what happens, we're part of nature, we've been here and we'll continue to be here.” —Kah Yangni
Kah Yangni is a self-taught illustrator and muralist living in Philadelphia, PA. They make heartfelt art about justice, queerness, and joy. Their clients include the New York Times, Vice, BUST Magazine, the Movement for Black Lives, Rock the Vote, the National Women’s Law Center, the Transgender Law Center, and others. They’ve presented their work for the Poster House in NYC and the RISD Museum, and their work has been featured in Them, Bustle, Hyperallergic, and Colorlines. @kahyangni | kahyangni.com
Painting of a ruined city landscape with four trans people who are Black, Indigenous and people of color, and the text “Trans People Heal the Land”. In the foreground, a figure kneels on the ground, weeping light onto a small green plant while their friend comforts and guards them. In the background, a figure in a windswept dress strides forward with plants growing along her path.
“My goal while creating this piece was to express the complexity of our current struggles. The turmoil of our society reverberates and expresses itself as simultaneous turmoil in our environment. Literally and figuratively aflame. But as a response to that I wanted to focus not only on the act of resistance, or resilience, but on all of the stages that lead up to it. On the overflowing tears, the leaning on another’s shoulders and the deep breath before the first step. I created this piece to honor exhaustion. This year has been more than exhausting for so many of us and so many of us have been asked to give so much. I wanted to make it clear that even though trans people have been decades ahead of the curve in regards to abolition, mutual aid, radical care, environmental consciousness, and community organizing, that we are revolutionary even at our empty. Our existence is essential however that may show up and healing happens at every step along the way.” —Glori Tuitt
Glori Tuitt is a Painter and Illustrator based in the Bronx, New York. A graduate from Purchase College with her B.F.A in Painting + Drawing her work focuses on the intersections of race, religion and pop culture in relation to the cultivation of identity. She is dedicated to the centering of Black trans bodies in the arts, hoping that her practice will return rightful ownership of the trans form. Ultimately seeking to both deify and humanize the Black trans experience. @eunuchdoll | glorituitt.com
Illustration of a huge black bear, mouth open in rage, towering above mountains and trees. On their back is a small figure in a blue dress reaching up to a glowing sun. Text says: “We Rise Like the Sun. Prayer for Trans Liberation”
“Growing up Black and trans, I sought assurance that I could be myself while navigating through a world that told me otherwise. I've grown attached to the idea of depicting people and animals like forces of nature that stand for the liberation of marginalized communities, rising up in the face of adversity. I hope for others to find solace in my work as a reminder that they are not alone.” — Colin Laurel
Colin Laurel is a Black trans illustrator working in editorial, licensing, posters, and social justice. Throughout his work, he explores identity, culture, mental health and advocates for self-help through making art. Colin hopes that his practice will inspire others to use creative solutions as a means for therapy and liberation. He has worked with Adobe, the New York Times, Icebreaker, Media Res Studio, UC Berkeley, Poetry Foundation, and organizations such as Forward Together, Trans Justice Funding Project, and the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights. He lives in Portland and adores his cat. @folklaurel | colinlaurel.com
Illustration of a crowd of trans and non-binary people of color of different races, abilities, sizes and genders. They are dancing, resting, talking and being together and wearing bright pink and purple outfits. Text says “We Survive So We Can Thrive”
“Far too often QTBIPOC lose sight of why we strive to survive. Since survival takes up so much of our physical and mental energy, it's easy to forget why we do it in the first place. We don't survive for the sake of survival. On the contrary, we survive in order to prosper as individuals, as a community, and as an idea. We survive today to thrive tomorrow. Not only will we thrive, so will those who come after. So here is to not forgetting why it's worth it.” —Art Twink
Art Twink grew up drawing critters they thought up to comfort themselves and their friends, and that mission continues to this very day. Through themes of queer pride, disability justice & decolonization they work to create worlds where marginalized folks can feel celebrated. @art_twink | arttwink.com
Brightly colored Illustration of four trans femmes of color with the text “Indulgence as Self Love”. Three figures sit together in a grassy clearing with a fruit platter, flowers, drinks and butterflies, while one person picks flowers in the background.
“Our people often need to focus on making it through the obstacles each day lays in front of them, focusing on surviving in a world not built for those who defy gender roles. But here we are… existing as beautiful and powerful trans and nonbinary people. Let us indulge and let us find pleasure. We deserve it all.” —Amir Khadar
Amir Khadar (They/Them) is a Sierra Leonean-American artist, designer, and educator primarily working through poetry, fiber art, and digital art. These mediums guide their conceptual explorations into gender theory, Black diasporic ecologies, aesthetic politics, and ancestral practices. @amir.khadar | amirkhadar.com
Thank you for dreaming with us!
Thank you for sharing the message of social justice through art!