ARTIST & PRODUCER
Celestina Cardona-Billington is an experienced creative professional with an international CV spanning writing, public art, performance, arts administration and social justice.
Celestina Billington is an interdisciplinary artist, writer and activist. Her practice is concerned with themes of radical community inclusivity, revolutionary feminist pedagogy and the spirit as a site for social transformation.
Celestina Cardona Billington's work has appeared in multiple productions and publications. She has a broad array of experiences working as a creative, with notable projects spanning public art, theater and independent publications. Spaces that have featured her works include: Museo de Arte Moderno, CICA museum, the DiverseWorks galleries, The Blaffer, Houston Art Car Museum, The MATCH Theater, The Alley Theater, Experimental Action Festival, Counter Current Festival and Houston Zine Fest. Her writing has been published in editions of FreePressHouston, The Menial, the Alethea and more.
Cardona-Billington's practice has been recognized by multiple grants, awards and scholarships. Awarding institutions include: The National Endowment of the Arts, The Corporation for National and Community Service, The City of Houston, Houston Arts Alliance, The Idea Fund and The University of Houston.
She holds a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Houston, where she also received an additional two years of conservatory training as an actor, with her minor in Women's Studies. Post-graduating, Cardona-Billington has continued to learn and grow by attending professional development workshops and conferences.
From 2016 to 2018, Cardona-Billington traveled the world, traversing North America in an old CRV. The journey took her through the Grand Canyon, Venice Beach, Montréal, Mexico City and across Massachusetts. The artist is now settled in New York City, New York.
Project & Performance Highlights
Sacred Voice of the Bayou
An experiential arts project headed by Billington in 2018 that received a $42,000 grant from the National Endowment of the Arts. Additional fundraising was able to secure a net budget of roughly $50,000. As the concept artist and director of the project, Billington led a team of ten artists from across disciplines to ultimately showcase a three-month sound + sculpture in Mason Park. The sculpture, titled “The Bayou Shrine,” was unveiled at a community festival alongside an experimental dance performance and DJ set, also facilitated by Billington. Project partners included Houston Arts Alliance, the City of Houston, the Mason Park Civic Association and the Houston East End community.
The Artist in Residence Program at New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park
For six months, Cardona-Billington developed the New Bedford Artist-in-Residence (AIR) program in partnership with the National Park Service, New Bedford Art Museum and Conservation Legacy. In this role, Billington expanded the reach of both the residency program and the museum by recruiting and mentoring local artists, facilitating workshops, writing grants, generating local partnerships and co-developing events. Under Cardona-Billington's leadership, the residency expanded into a program that exemplified standards of equity for participating artists. Through her outreach initiative, she was able to attract notable regional artists, including Nafis White and Dan Borelli to the program.
A zine featuring interviews with internationally acclaimed women-artists. For FlamingFemme, each interviewee gave insight on the subjects of contemporary art and feminine expression. Billington traveled across Europe and within the United States to conduct the interviews, a journey which was mobilized by several grants from The University of Houston, including the "Advocacy for Women" grant and the "International Education Fund Scholarship."
The Guillermo Gomez Peña Retrospective at Museo de Arte Moderno
Billington joined a group of artists and researchers at El Museo de Arte Moderno in Mexico City for an immersive residency with La Pocha Nostra, in conjunction with The Guillermo Gomez Peña Retrospective. It culminated in a live performance which had 10,000 attendees over two days.
Navigate this website to explore her full CV, featured performance photos, project essays and publications.