Marienne Thomas, artistically known as Yen, is an amazing multipotentialite. She is a multi-talented painter, jewelry maker, natural hair stylist, choir director, liturgical dance choreographer, playwright, actress, and youth leader, bringing her passionate, outgoing, and energetic personality to all that she undertakes. Born and raised in Brooklyn, Marienne is a self-taught artist. Marienne came to Bailey’s Café, a Brooklyn-based arts and cultural center, as a volunteer in the fall of 2007 while she was pursuing her undergraduate degree in Media Studies, and quickly became their lead teaching artist. Currently, she is the lead teacher for Bailey’s fourth and fifth grade girls arts-based rites of passage after school program as well as the lead teacher for the girls of Bailey’s summer program.
Marienne has always been a lover of the arts since she was a child but, it was her variable experiences as a new caregiver for her Mom that awakened the dormant painter inside. It was there, where she found her true craft and tool for her own wellness. Bailey’s Café is not just a work space but a therapeutic place where she can explore and express her emotions and navigate her way in life through art. Her experiences with Bailey’s Café continue to deepen her understanding of her own talents. Painting has become Yen’s primary focus of her creative work. It is through her connection with Bailey’s that Yen learned about the Fulton Art Fair organization and eventually became a member.