This event is the planned public opening of our newly established creative place, a celebration and exhibition of our first 2 resident artists.

courtesy: Rene Gortat

courtesy: Rene Gortat

Rene Gortat

Friday, March 15th - Sunday, March 17th Artist Shelter 12-5 PM

The opening of the Artist Shelter, a functional container tiny house designed and constructed by Sculptor Rene Gortat for housing future resident artists. The shelter is part of his MFA Thesis project for the College of Visual and Performing Art at Syracuse University. Rene also created two site-specific work on the desert property “rootless” and “outline”.

Michelle Castillo

Sari-Sari Store 

Sari-sari stores in the Philippines function as a vital component to community building, serves as an economic & social hub for the neighborhood, a space for interpersonal relationships, and sometimes the store is attached to a home. Each store is typically run and owned by a family. The store also serves as the eyes and ears of neighborhoods and streets. The Sari-Sari store will function as a swap/ barter/ story exchange/ donation-based space. 

Friday, March 15th & Saturday, March 16th Sari-Sari Store  Interactive Hours: 5:00 PM-7:30 PM

The Sari-Sari Store will have store hours where you can swap items, share stories, poems, and drawings with Castillo & each other. The store will be hosting a variety of happenings from a poetry reading, a moringa workshop, and a special Lola's Kusina limited seating dinner. Lola's Kusina will be popping up at the Sari-Sari Store serving up samples of Filipino street food favorites.

At the store, you can create a poem, share a story, write a letter to a loved one, create a drawing on the themes of migration, home, homeland, culture, family, and community. You can swap the following items. (Donations in any form are also accepted as an exchange): Fruits & Vegetables, Leave a note with one of your family recipes, something from your culture, books, clothes , vinyl, plants and flowers.  Extra items not used after the swap will be donated to a local shelter.

Sunday, March 17  Poetry Reading 2 PM-4 PM 


The Sari-Sari Store hosts a poetry reading featuring the work of  POC writers whose powerful work connects and overlaps with the themes of migration, home, homeland, identity, family, culture, and community.  Featured Writers:

  • Irene Suico Soriano is a Filipinx poet born in the Philippines. She immigrated to the US in the early 80s growing up to New Wave and Punk Rock in LA's Historic Filipinotown, the Wilshire corridor of Koreatown & East Hollywood. Her first book of poetry "Primates from an Archipelago" was published by Rabbit Fool Press in 2017. Her poetry has appeared in, among others, the Los Angeles Times; Philippines Free Press; Solidarity Journal; Flippin': Filipinos on America (AAWW); Babaylan: An Anthology of Filipina and Filipina American Writers (Aunt Lute) & Short Fuse: The Global Anthology of New Fusion Poetry (Rattapallax Press). She participates in local animal rights and anti-vivisection efforts and believes in the fundamental rights of non-human animals to live and be free from harm, pain, exploitation and captivity. Find her on IG: @archipelagopoem  

  • Jenny-Liza Ramoran is a poet, writer, teacher, and musician. As a child, she grew up performing in churches. During her college years, she began experimenting with the written word and shared her poetry at readings and events. Her poetry has been published in Coachella Magazine and other places. She has taught within the public school system since 2014. She has provided instruction in the areas of mathematics, voice, and piano. From 2009 to 2013, she was the youth choir director. Lastly, activism became an area of interest for her within the past year. She has participated with the collective, Bayanihan Desert, in promoting community events that engaged in social and cultural awareness.

  • David Kelly currently serves as a trustee on the Palm Springs Library Board of Trustees and is a facilitator for one of the library’s book clubs. He enjoys writing poetry, short stories, memoir and historical fiction. He has been published in DESERT magazine, Desert Outlook and various other publications. In addition, David has read aloud prize-winning stories and judged writing contests for the Palm Springs Writers Guild. You can email him at DavidJaxKelly@gmail.com.

  • Angela Peñaredondo is a queer Pilipinx interdisciplinary writer, artist, and educator. Angela is the author of the chapbook Maroon (Jamii Publications) and All Things Lose Thousands of Times (Inlandia Institute, winner of the Hillary Gravendyk Poetry Prize). Her work has appeared or upcoming in The Academy of American Poets, Black Warrior Review, Anomaly (aka Drunken Boat), Four Way Review, Southern Humanities Review and elsewhere. Angela is a Kundiman and VONA/Voices of our Nations Art fellow as well as an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing and Digital Media at California State University San Bernardino. 

  • Michelle Castillo, artist in residence

  • Admission is free, donations are kindly accepted. Donations will go directly back to the writers.

Sunday, March 17th Lola's Kusina Dinner (Private) 7 PM. 

Sunday, March 31st Malunggay Workshop 1 PM-3 PM 

Lola's Kusina will be hosting a Malunggay (Moringa Oleifera)  workshop. Castillo will be sharing different ways to use the healing tree and we will sample Filipino dishes that utilize moringa.The moringa we will use will be coming from her backyard garden! Michelle grew up in an intergenerational household where moringa was in a lot of her favorite childhood dishes like munggo bean soup, tinola, and served fresh as a salad. Currently, moringa is having a moment in popular culture but has been a staple in many ancient cultures way before it made it on the mainstream wellness hot list. 

Limited Seating: 5 spots left Admission: Free. Donations kindly accepted.

Malunggay Workshop / Deadline March 10th


Friday, March 15th - Sunday, March 17th Rocks and Twigs 12-5 PM

Presentation of recent works on paper by the Yvonne Buchanan and Dorene Quinn in the on-site Vilma exhibition space.


Buckwheat space’s exhibition (W)here is a part of Desert X Parallel Projects.

Desert X 2019

desert x /parallel-projects