Seanan Forbes is a queer disabled storyteller, writer, poet, photographer, restorative justice worker, and trauma-informed meditation teacher. Seanan has lived in two countries, worked in six, and done research and created art in more than forty, learning again and again there are far more bridges than barriers between us, and that kindness can change worlds.
Seanan has taught and done storytelling, writing, and photography in numerous countries, including UK, US, the EU, Canada, Japan, and Botswana, and has had photo shows in New York City, Kansas City, and London. Their writing has been published around the world. Although Seanan is largely known for food writing and Japanese short-form poetry, they are currently a researcher at the New York Public Library, where they are working on a queer young adult backstory for one of Shakespeare’s plays, and exploring early seventeenth century arts and culture.
Invited to perform and teach at theatre festivals, Seanan created a solo performance incorporating aerial arts and oral storytelling for Geochang, South Korea, and taught and performed with Japanese butoh dancer Katsura Kan as part of a team of puppeteers and performers from across Eastern Asia. At the University of London, Seanan studied anthropology, with concentrations in visual, food, and gender; journalism; sociology; photography; writing; and performance. They earned a BA in anthropology and journalism/communications, and MAs in performance and writing.
They also trained in teaching meditation to children, teens, and adults with the Interdependence Project in New York City, studied trauma-sensitive mindfulness online with Gabór Maté and David Treleaven, and trained with The Jim Henson Foundation’s Foundation Manager Lindsey “Z” Briggs in using puppetry to connect with children on the autism spectrum. A core teacher on IDP’s meditation teacher-training course and school professional-development programs, Seanan is currently building their skills by attending Jack Kornfield and Tara Brach’s teacher-training course and David Treleaven’s advanced trauma-sensitive mindfulness course.
Seanan has taught arts and mindful movement to children with profound, often multiple disabilities, and led trainings and professional development workshops adults who work with this community. They’ve led multiple workshops for parents on advocating for disabled children, and have taught people from five to eighty years of age, in all stages of wellness and ability. Seanan’s work is rooted in kindness, intercultural and trauma-informed practices, restorative justice, neuroscience, fostering creativity, practical applications of mindfulness, and countering our species’ negativity bias.