About the Founder


At the age of 5, Dominique taught herself the important work of creative authorship. With a keen eye, she studied and drew the figures of those around her and invited these explorations to foster her current enthrallment and appreciation of art. Drawing offered her at the earliest stages of her life, the affirmation that she held a power to imagine and create something beautiful.

Using visual arts as a guide and the foundation of her truth, Dominique navigated through challenges and several vocational changes, until she arrived at her life’s mission: to foster community healing, to encourage thriving populations, and share her love of art with the world.


 13177490_10156980088905691_971031466507147148_nAs a teen, Dominique was weighted by the emotions and experiences endured through foster care. Dominique navigated her transition out of foster care without the support of mental health services. After practicing yoga with her eldest sister, Dominique noticed a change in her social emotional well-being.

 

Dominique continues her practice by offering a yoga space that encourages yogis (seasoned and aspiring) to be curious, brave, and compassionate.

Dominique continued her art education through high school, gaining experience in ceramics, darkroom photography, and theatrical set design. As a young art student, Dominique invested her time exploring every medium; as an artist, she explored the context of marginalized identity.

 

 


 imageDominique continued her art education through high school, gaining experience in ceramics, darkroom photography, and theatrical set design. As a young art student, Dominique invested her time exploring every medium; as an artist, she explored the context of marginalized identity.


Her interest in art, social systems, and identity led her to obtain her BFA in Art Education and her B.S. in Cultural and Prehistoric Anthropology. Her Studies and imaginings culminated into a body of work that explores black storytelling and inherited identities, black transience, history, and conjure. After graduation Dominique stopped creating art. She was drawn into a creative lull, exasperated by the challenges of becoming an artist in a white male dominant space. She stopped making art for 4 years.

Dominique’s art education did not include extensive study of black and brown artists.  She did not receive instruction from art professors who could help her conceptualize being a black creative. Noting that her 6-year art education was devoid of black and brown artist, she pondered the worth of an art space centering these creatives. This inquiry led to the production of Open Studio, a series of creative spaces, the first of which is Brush Work With Dominique.


Akoma’s mission and vision are informed by Dominique’s journey to her current vision of promoting wellness and social justice.