photo by Pat Mazzara

photo by Pat Mazzara


San Francisco,  2012 – present.

Artistic Director and Producer.

THIS IS WHAT I WANT is a five year old annual performance festival in San Francisco about desire. The festival was started by Jesse Hewit, and is now artistically directed by Tessa Wills.

The TIWIW mailing list is HERE.


THIS IS WHAT I WANT 2014: Desire and the Gaze

Was comprised of 8 events between 1st and the 21st of June 2014 including two workshops, two film nights, an ‘oil action’, a symposium and two performances.

36 artists participated.

Artistic Director & Producer: Tessa Wills

Assistant Producer: Elizabeth Cooper

Production Team: Lolo Fernandez & Cindy Dewitt

Co produced by CounterPULSE and The Center for Sex and Culture.


THIS IS WHAT I WANT 2013: online performance from a hotel room.

Live performances from a hotel room via webcam for online audience only. Performances in San Francisco, Bristol, Massachusetts, Los Angeles

Artistic Director: Tessa Wills

Production: Elizabeth Cooper, Kat Cole, Justin Morrison

Artists: Tom Marshman, TT Baum, Emily Souter Johnson, Tessa Wills, Rachael Dichter, Peter Max Lawrence, Minna Harri, Rafael Esparza, Sofia Senna, Elanor Clare

With: Alex White, Tessa Flemming, Dino Dinco, Shelton Richard Nixon Lindsay and Macklin Kowal.

Dance Discourse Project about the festival HERE.

THIS IS WHAT I WANT 2012: Economies of Desire

Artistic Director: Tessa Wills

Produced by THEOFFCENTER, SOMArts and the Center for Sex and Culture  with TT Baum, Ernesto Soppranni, Kat Cole, Tessa Wills and Rachael Dichter.

Curators: Rachael Dichter, Jesse Hewit, Tessa Wills, Anna Martine Whitehead, Doran George

Artists: DavEND, DiaDear, Mabel Negrete, Mica Sigourney, Nick Duran, Jmy James Kidd, Rafael Esparza, Sara Kraft, Taisha Paggett.

Slow Sex Symposia: Created by Doran George. Hosted by Carol Queen and Jim Self with Dossie Easton, Joe Kramer, Sadie Lune, DavEND, Rafael Esparza, Sara Kraft. Documentation by Mark Macbeth.

CHARGE was made for the festival this year.

DANCE THEATRE JOURNAL was written about the festival this year.



Artistic Director Jesse Hewit

Produced by The Garage, THEOFFCENTER and SOMArts

Artists and curators: Jiz Lee, Michelle Tea, Jason Torres Hancock, Xandra Iberra, Harold Burns, Ben McCoy, Kevin Seaman, Dacia Holliday, Vagina Jenkins, Mica Sigourney, Anna Martine Whitehead, Tessa Wills, Keith Hennassy, Jess Curtis, Harold Burns, Jesse Hewit, Monique Jenkinson, Julie Phelps, Maryam Rostami, Rachael Dichter, Annie Danger, Chase Joynt, M.A.brooks, Hana Lee Erdman, Em Gift.

Production support: Ernesto Soppranni, Rachael Dichter, Joe Landini, Darl Andrew Packard, Wolfgang Wachalowsky.


Tessa Wills is a live artist

and choreographer with a background in music. She is from England, trained in central Europe and now lives in San Francisco. Her work elevates flaws and wounds as portals, ways of staging humanity, and often integrates eroticism to charge the pieces, which happen primarily on stage and video. Aside from the relentless pull of desire, her current practice is inspired by Hermits and professional mourning.

Want more? Come say hi.

Have a story or a thought about Hermits? Contact Tessa

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