Photo by Margarita Vogiatzi. Lighting by Chih-Yu Mandy Liu.
Sixto-Juan Zavala (he/him) is a designer and illustrator from Texas currently based in Dundee, UK. He holds a BFA in Communication Design from Texas State University and an MA in Narrative Environments from UAL: Central Saint Martins with a focus on exhibition design, graphic design, and illustration. Zavala is especially interested in culture, marginalised groups, the environment, and using visual communication and spatial design to facilitate cultural change.

Zavala founded Queer Botany in 2020; inspired by the theoretical lens of queer ecology, the project studies connections between queerness and plants through events, story-telling, and design. Queer Botany aims to share marginalised perspectives and support more diverse representations in the environment and outdoors. Zavala has designed maps, installed interpretive displays, hosted botanical drawing sessions, and guided walks sharing stories about plants from a queer perspective. Queer Botany has worked with Chelsea Physic Garden, The Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, The Victoria & Albert Museum, Wellcome Collection, Barbican Centre, The Royal Parks, Fierce (Birmingham), Sutton House & Breaker’s Yard (National Trust), and Fringe! Queer Film & Arts Festival.

Zavala is the winner of the 2021 Spatial Cultural Equity award from the Spatial Practices Program Prizes and was nominated for a MullenLowe NOVA Award, the Spatial Practices Prize, and The Steve Lumby Drawing Prize. He has been published in multiple publications including Graphis Poster Annual 2019Plant Kingdom: Design with Plant Aesthetics (2015), Communication Arts Design Annual 56 (2015), and has exhibited work at The People’s Gallery (Austin, TX), Mexic-Arte Museum (Austin, TX), Gravelmouth Gallery (San Antonio, TX), and Silkwörm Gallery (San Antonio, TX).