The 2021 AnkhLave Garden Project Fellows consist of 5 BIPOC artists who will create site-specific art installations throughout the grounds of Queens Botanical Garden (QBG).  By presenting artists and art-making in a nontraditional setting like the Garden, AnkhLave aims to promote BIPOC artists who represent and reflect the Garden’s diverse audience.  This project is made possible by the Queens Council on the Arts with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the New York City Council. Additional support was provided by Can’d Aid. Meet the fellows below:


Moses Ros

“Fruits of the Spirit”

“Fruits of the Spirit” is an installation consisting of three art banners along the Garden’s Oak Allée. Inspired by Love, Joy, and Peace, they create a graceful and festive atmosphere.


Moses Ros is a Dominican-American sculptor, painter, and printmaker. Highly influenced by his direct contact with Caribbean culture and New York City street culture, his creative sources are usually gathered from urban pop culture, graphic abstract symbolism and my living memories.

The formal aspect of Ros’ work is a colorful synthesis of playful approaches to languages (Spanish English) that represent his Latino and Dominican-York heritage. His work combines printing expertise with the movement and joyfulness of life. By collaging forms and fusions of imaginary creatures with daily-life objects, Ros free interprets the contrasts, dualisms, and paradoxes so present in the Latino experience of New York City.

Ros has created large-scale public art commissions for the New York Department of Cultural Affairs, Bronx Council for the Arts, and New York City Housing Authority, plus stained-glass windows for the Metropolitan Transit Authority. He has had solo exhibitions at the Yeshiva University Museum in New York, the Paterson Museum in New Jersey, the Bronx Museum, and El Instituto de Cultura y Arte in Santiago, Dominican Republic. Ros earned a Bachelor of Architecture from Pratt Institute.

Renluka Maharaj

“Mast/ Heads”

Trunks sow secated bodies, Trees and sails whisper in leaves.

We were shipped and whipped, Never forsaking brutal realities.

We adapted roots to routes, Sap to the widening gap Between butterflies and bees.

In the fields, sugar was bitter, Airing the sheer brutality Of dawn’s broken lullabies.

On the branches of exilic brutality, See, we leave our photography. On the face of pistils and tendrils, Never as endless accounts of perils And hateful narratives.

See our mast/head, it tells you How we opened routes to fertile roots…

It bears our name plate, our template, Our fate when our heads met masts Over the seas of erased pasts.

Between masts and masks, See our faces o unknown passenger, Read the trunk and behold History! Our eyes are still sailing in eternity…

– Friend & Poet: Khal Torabully, Founder of Coolitude, the inclusive methodology of indenture

Renluka Maharaj completed her BFA at the University of Colorado Boulder and her MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago where she received the Barbara De Genevieve Scholarship.   Her works are in institutional collections including The Art Institute of Chicago, Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, Joan Flasch artist book collection, Los Angeles Center for Digital Art and special collections at the University of Colorado Boulder as well as numerous private collections. Her work has been recognized with awards including Fellowships from: Vermont Studio Center, Fountainhead Residency and Virginia Center For Creative Arts.​

Christy Bencosme

“Llegó La Luz”

​Llegó La Luz is a reflection of being a child of immigrants and coming from generational poverty. Translating to “the light has arrived”, the title echoes a phrase exclaimed in The Dominican Republic once electricity returns from the commonly experienced power outages. Honoring working-class immigrants, including the artist’s parents, this sculpture can be activated by viewers through touch, sound and sight. Through this activation, children of immigrants are reminded that their plight of resilience embodies the light manifested by their ancestors and the essentiality of immigrant families in Queens and beyond.

Christy Bencosme (b. 1992) is a Dominican-American artist from Jamaica, Queens. Creating art to initiate a visual conversation with others, her goal is to provide the opportunity to ask ourselves questions of social progress. Reflecting a voice of poverty, she uses repurposed and low-cost material to create socio-political works and often installs them directly in the public. Via a practice where the relationship to the material leads the trajectory of the work, there is a harmony between conceptualism and visual storytelling. Christy received her BFA in Fine Arts at The School of Visual Arts in 2017 and is currently an MFA candidate at Queens College with a concentration in Social Practice Art.

Dennis Redmoon Darkeem

“Keepers of the Four Winds”

These four sculptures are painted in the medicine wheel colors White, Red, Black & Yellow. To honor the elements of nature and the colors of mankind. The symbolisms in these sculptures are connected to symbols found in indigenous mounds in Native communities along the East Coast and Central America. These symbols tell stories of what was present at that time.

Dennis RedMoon Darkeem is an artist inspired to create art work based on the familiar objects that he views through his daily travels.  He discovers elements in existing architecture and among everyday items found within the home.  He ultimately set out to express a meaningful story about events in his life and those found with the communities he works with. He utilizes different media in the creation of his work. This allows for great versatility and a rich viewer experience as the eye uncovers the multiple layers that often characterize mixed media art.

Graciela Cassel


A surprising, multiplied reality will awaken dreams of new possibilities in viewers when they look through “Kaleidoscope”. The viewer will discover different dimensions amongst the trees, in the sky, and in their own image within the Queens Botanical Garden landscape.​

Graciela Cassel was born in Argentina and currently lives in New York. She earned an MA in Studio Art from New York University and received an MFA from School of Visual Arts. Cassel recently presented her installations at Museo del Barrio, Sothebys and BRAC. Her videos received international awards and were screened in more than forty international festivals. Rivers received the NYC Queens Arts Fund in 2016. She recently received another Award Grant NYC form Queens Arts Fund in 2020. Citylife II was selected in twenty festivals. In 2019 Citytlife II recently received: Best Experimental Picture and Best Sound design awards.