Shop Manager / Lead Fabricator
Co-Founder of New Orleans Airlift / Artistic Director
Co-Founder of New Orleans Airlift External Affairs Director
Taylor Lee Shepherd
Consulting Architect / Advisory Board
Christian Repaal (b. 1971 in LaPlata, Maryland), an art fabricator, bass player, building contractor, and sometimes art teacher, has lived in New Orleans since 1994. In his many years here Christian has forged deep ties into the local communities of visual artists, musicians, tradespeople, and educators. Both a mason and a carpenter he has been in the trades for nearly 25 years. In the last ten years, since attending UNO for history and fine art (1999- 2003), Christian has built quite a reputation as an art fabricator. Camille Henrot, Christopher Saucedo, and dozens of other museums and artists have utilized and appreciated his ability to communicate their visions through his handiwork. Most recently he has worked closely with celebrated artist Swoon to help her realize some of her more complex three dimensional pieces. Christian has, in his time, trained many young carpenters, masons, and would be sculptors in the proper and safe use of tools, building techniques, and use of materials; both on the job and in the classroom. For the past seven summers he has taught at Lusher Charter Schoolʼs Summer Arts Intensive Program, helping young artists gain new skills.
Delaney Martin (b. 1976, Honolulu, Hawaii) is a multi-media artist. Her work often engages the historical and cultural specificity of people and places to create spectacular, immersive environments marked by frequent collaborations and performance. In 2008, she founded the artist-driven organization New Orleans Airlift with Jay Pennington out of a desire to give back and go back to New Orleans post-Katrina. Her work as Airlift's Artistic Director has led her to create even more ambitious, highly collaborative and multi-disciplinary projects. This rewarding experience has given her practice a deep commitment to the power of collaboration between artists and communities. Her 2011-2012 installation and performance platform, The Music Box, highlighted these values by bringing 25 artists, nearly 100 musicians, and thousands of visitors into a sonic shantytown of interactive musical houses for exploratory opening hours and nights of orchestral concerts. Subsequently she has created new editions of The Music Box in Kiev, Ukraine, and Shreveport, Louisiana. Martin continues to shepherd this growing project, while adding other projects to Airlift’s canon and working independently as an artist.
Elizabeth Shannon is from Louisiana and has lived in New Orleans since obtaining a degree from a consortium program: St Mary’s Dominican College, Loyola and Xavier Universities.
The artist has contributed to the community as a founding and board member of the Contemporary Arts Center; worked with the LA Craft Council; is an active organizer; consultant; fundraiser; neighborhood activist and advocate for art in education.
The artist has received grants, awards and honors through the years and has exhibited in galleries, museums and art centers in the US and internationally; education residencies, curatorial, multi-media productions, promotion of cultural tourism and worked in the Louisiana film, video and print industry.
Jay is co-founder of New Orleans Airlift. However he is much more well known as his alter ego, DJ Rusty Lazer and for his work with the New Orleans bounce community of rappers and performers. Jay has performed throughout Europe, the U.S., China and Japan and created soundtracks for circuses, plays and performance art spectacles for the MOMA/P.S. 1, Deitch Projects and many others. He has co-produced several Bounce videos including Big Freedia's "Y'all Get Back Now", "Excuse" and Nicky Da B's "Express Yourself" (w/ Diplo) and "Hot Potato Style". Additionally, he has written about culture for major publications (Arena Homme Plus, Tank, and more), appeared in articles and videos about New Orleans culture for the New York Times, Spin, Bust, The Carson Daly Show, The Sundance Channel and dozens of others. His relationships with the world of fashion have also led to collaborations and events with artists such as Nick Knight, Rick Owens, Matthew Williams (Lady Gaga / Kanye West) and several clothing companies including Vans, Karmaloop, Ray Ban and many more.
Michael Glenboski is an architect who moved to New Orleans after spending nine yearsin New York City. A native of Omaha, NE, his education took him to New York where he studied architecture and film at the Pratt Institute. Living somewhere between art and design, Michael has worked with the MoMA, PS1, CookFox, and Jeff Koons and has had his hands in buildings, constructions, and shows around the world. Michael spends a large portion of his spare time working on his house in the St. Roch neighborhood of the city, tinkering with vintage motorcycles, and entertaining his Catahoula. As an architect his passion remains collaborating with his neighborhood and community and using the potential of the built environment to enact change and opportunity. Michael has volunteered with Airlift since its early conception.
Taylor Lee Shepherd has been the lead sound artist for New Orleans Airlift since the inception of The Music Box. Shepherd, along with Delaney Martin and Swoon formed the very early collaborative meetings around building a musical house and has advised and influenced the process and the realization of the project. Shepherd has exhibited at numerous museums including The Museum of Curiosity in London, The Ogden Museum of Southern Art in New Orleans, and Art Arsenale in Kiev, Ukraine. Additionally, he has shown his work widely in galleries including Barristers (New Orleans), The Candle Factory, (New Orleans), L’art Noir (New Orleans), Gallery T (Denver) and Bereznitzky Gallery (Berlin). His work was included in the wildly popular Sequence of Waves show organized by the Rabid Hands Collective at St. Cecilia’s Church in Brooklyn and he continues to build new musical instruments and inventions with Airlift in New Orleans and most recently Shreveport, LA.
Tori Bush is an arts administrator and freelance writer. She is currently a development officer at the National WWII Museum. Tori worked as New Orleans Airlift’s Program Director from 2012 - 2015 having previously worked as the Programs Director for the Creative Alliance of New Orleans. Her commitment to Airlift’s programming has led to her staying on with the organization as a board member.
Tori also works as a freelance arts consultant. She has worked with Joan Mitchell Center in 2013 as a community connector and 2014 as a consultant on individual artist grants. Tori is a contributing writer for arts publications such as ArtVoices, Daily Serving and Pelican Bomb, and has an upcoming piece in the October issue of Art in America. She has sat on multiple artist roundtables and panels such as the Southeastern College Arts Conference Panel “Art Criticism in the South” and Shreveport Regional Arts Council’s “Covering the Arts:Regional and National Issues.” Tori has an M.A. in Arts Administration from the University of New Orleans and is currently completing a M.A. in Creative Nonfiction from the same university.
Wayne Troyer is principal and design director of studio WTA, a New Orleans based architectural, planning and interiors firm that focuses on the expressive use of details, the innovative use of materials, and a regional design sensitivity that is based on a modern aesthetics. Wayne leads a collaborative design team with an integrated approach to design and construction and a passion for harmony in architectural interventions within historic contexts. The studio has established a body of work that consistently addresses larger conceptual and social considerations concerning emotions and experience within the built environment. Wayne is active with a variety of planning initiatives and serves on numerous boards that work to preserve the unique architectural fabric of New Orleans. Wayne has taught architectural design and environmental technology at the University of Arkansas, architectural and interior design platforms at Louisiana State University, and architectural design at Tulane University's School of Architecture. He received his master's degree from the School of Architecture at Tulane University and a Bachelor of Music from Loyola University New Orleans.
A resident of New Orleans since 1998, Bryan's professional endeavors range from filmmaking to real estate development to technology startups. While seemingly spread over many unrelated fields, at the core of every project that Bryan takes on is a desire to create experiences that bring communities together and that enrich people's lives.
Jonn Hankins is the Founder and CEO of the New Orleans Master Crafts Guild. He previously held the positions of Executive Director of the New Orleans African American Museum, Development Director of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival Foundation, and Principal Development Officer for Corporate and Community Affairs at the New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA). At NOMA, he directed, “Raised to the Trade: Creole Building Arts of New Orleans,” an award winning exhibition and oral history research project that documented two centuries of families of master craftsmen who built and still maintain New Orleans’ unique architecture. Mr. Hankins has advocated for and lectured to apprentice trainees on the need to revive traditional building trade skills in a post-Katrina New Orleans beset by what has been described as “a lack of traditional building skills in the local population and a low quality of rebuilding that threatened New Orleans’ character” by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales Foundation for Building Community.
Alita brings over fifteen years’ experience in production, fundraising, publicity and events in the arts underground of New York City and New Orleans, with a key role in arts organizations such as Flux Factory, the Madagascar Institute, Swimming Cities, Rubulad, and the Boggsville Boatel. Her work crosses the fields of costume design, speakeasy, performative/historic circus and carnival tradition, hospitality, and trespass theater with collaborative group the Shadow Parks Department. She holds a B.A. in Clinical Psychology from Smith College and a Masters of Science in Historic Preservation and Urban Planning from Pratt Institute.
Seth Levine is a partner at the Jones Walker law firm of New Orlean His practice involves a wide range of commercial transactions, including financing transactions, real estate, foreclosures, and bankruptcy. Mr. Levine is a 2001 graduate of Tulane University Law School, where he received his juris doctor degree. He attended New York University's Leonard N. Stern School of Business and received his Bachelor of Science in Finance in 1998. Mr. Levine is a Licensed Real Estate Broker in Louisiana, and devotes time to serving as the President of the Board of Directors of the Faubourg St. John Neighborhood Association, and as a board member of the Jewish Endowment Foundation of Louisiana. Additionally, he is a member of the American Bar Association and the Louisiana State Bar Association.
Nancy Fournier has over thirty years of experience in juvenile justice, youth development and child welfare issues working in the public sector, academia and think tank settings. She has been a consultant to governmental and nonprofit organizations since 2004 and has worked with a variety of nonprofit, philanthropic and government agencies focusing on Executive Coaching, Organizational Development, Strategic Planning, Performance Management, Senior Level Recruitment and Board Development and Training.