Facilitator Michael Battle

Michael David Battle, a radical resistance artist, thinker, Baba, and healer, embodies the spirit of an Aquarian born at 0 degrees on January 20, 1988. With an upbringing in Pennsylvania and Virginia, he graduated with honors from Chatham University in ’09, majoring in Political Science and Cultural Studies with a minor in creative writing. Barry University witnessed his mastery, awarding him a master’s in public administration in ’12.

His family ignited Michael David’s early artistic spark. A survivor and advocate for black trans lives, he founded Garden of Peace, Inc. in 2012, a pioneering black trans-led arts nonprofit.

Beyond his art, Michael David, now married with five children (three adults), resides in Portland, Oregon, and has explored 45 continental US states. Fueled by a love for nature and a commitment to serving our planet’s natural resources, his identity as a maroon of the Great Dismal Swamp, a child raised in the Appalachian Mountains, and having grandparents from Tennessee and Alabama adds layers to his artistic narrative. These landscapes, where he hiked and camped extensively, imprint on his work, echoing the resilience and strength of his ancestors.

As a practicing Buddhist, his art, influenced by Blackness, indigenous and hoodoo practices, Southern Baptist Christianity, family, and musical icons, transcends traditional boundaries. Prayer, meditation, and ritual deeply inform his creations, as does his commitment to environmental stewardship.

Michael David’s art is a testament to his healing journey and a celebration of collective resistance. In prose writings and visually striking pieces using raw materials, vintage art, metal, and wood, he captures the essence of Black resistance against systems of oppression.

Rooted in a lineage of strong Black women who have raised champions, Michael David’s journey intertwines personal resilience, connection to nature, and an unwavering commitment to environmental responsibility. His artistic expression becomes a tapestry woven with the threads of identity, exploration, and the profound influence of the powerful women who shaped his legacy.

Scroll to Top