Over the past 15+ years, I have been lucky to collaborate, contract or work with communities through a number of groups and organizations, including:
testimonials + recommendations
“I have faith in Mensen as a person, as an advocate for social change, as an artist and as an innovative thinker. She is well versed in the language of inclusion, equality and community and she creatively puts that language front and center in all of her work. She stands up for what she believes in and for that, I believe in her. I feel strongly that she will continue to make important work that has artistic merit as well as a strong social impact."
— Lynsey Peisinger, The Mile Long Opera
“I was presented with the opportunity to collaborate with Mensen again in 2017, at the University of California, San Francisco’s (UCSF) National Center of Excellence in Women’s Health. She was hired to assist the Youth Steering Committee (YSC) in creating the main visual for their upcoming youth-led summit on the topic of girl on girl hate, competition, and horizontal violence. The 2017-2018 Youth Steering Committee was a group of 15 girls from 10 different San Francisco public high schools who were in charge with creating a day-long summit for 300 of their peers in the Spring of 2018. Mensen came in and skillfully facilitated a meeting with our youth about their vision for a world without horizontal violence. It was so easy to trust her to lead a project with my students because she models confidence, grace, and above anything else, she listens. She listened when my students spoke about their visions for a better world. She listened when my students shared images that they thought represented them well. Most importantly, she made sure to take their direction and enable the move forward. She pushed forward as the youth steered the concept, the design, and thusly the power behind this message. It should be noted, that power would not have been possible without Mensen’s masterful skills as an educator. She truly centers marginalized voices, which made my youth feel inspired and equally at ease with an otherwise complete stranger. Her workshops were engaging and participatory, each question asked with kindness, each comment presented clearly. These skills helped my youth feel confidence in themselves as creative forces. They honed in on their visual language because Mensen told them to trust themselves and speak. For these reasons and so much more, I give Mensen my highest possible recommendation. I am confident in her ability to succeed in her goals and to continue to be a leader engaged in service to her communities.”
—- Kimberlynn Acevedo
“Mensen supported the creation of girl-led art for a research report my organization produced. She was flexible and timely, especially given our budget and timeline. And, more importantly, she was able to engage our young women in a series of exercises that supported us not only with visual art for the report but also solid recommendations for action. It was a pleasure to work with Mensen.”
—- Livier Gutierrez, Program Director at Alliance for Girls.
“Mensen has proven to be the single most hard-working person I know. She is known among our overlapping communities of students and colleagues as someone who through and through commits to the values she speaks to in her artistic and educational work of equity. She models care and thoroughness in all she does, across the large scale visioning of work to the micro level of human interaction. Years after she moved on from working with our program, and former colleagues and students continue to shed praise on the impact Menesn has had on their lives. On top of this thoroughness, Mensen is incredibly talented in her artistic abilities, and has taken it upon herself to develop a deep understanding of historical and societal issues that often get in the way of people being able to work together productively. And above all, she is a people person, and is a natural at communicating with people across many different identities.”
— Nadia Williams, Parsons Scholars Program
“Mensen is a talented artist across several media (mural, illustration, photography, etc). In addition to her talent and skill at creating pieces, she is an experienced educator. She demonstrates true professionalism in educational settings while blending an authentic interest in the lives of the youth she teaches. Our arts-based traffic safety program was successful thanks to Mensen's collaboration from planning to conclusion.”
— Michelle Kaucic, New York City Department of Transportation.
“Mensen is dedicated, thorough, and stays close to the mission. Mensen and I collaborated on the StoryCorps Justice Project in 2016 and 2017. Mensen partnered with various CBOs to record the stories of young adults who were impacted by incarceration, which were then preserved at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. Mensen remained client-centered and professional in her approach of the work: responsive to feedback, trauma informed, and flexible throughout the process. She is a true advocate for all communities. It was a pleasure working with her and I look forward to collaborating with her sometime in the near future.”
— Mia Legaspi-Cavin, The Osborne Association