museum is my medium
Larissa Nickel is an artist, designer, educator, and curator whose work integrates Philosophy, Art, Visual Culture, and Design with an emphasis on identity, narrative place, and subculture. She applies a transdisciplinary approach focused on the interrelationship, negotiation, collaboration, engagement and possibility of cultural coproduction. Her work explores the synthesis of architecture and the body, and interactive technology investigating links between identity and place, collective identity, memory and the archive. Using the museum as an active methodology for practice, she creates works that address the museum as an artistic medium creating works that research, archive, collect, educate, and exhibit a new architecture of creative practice and cultural exchange that embraces mobility and the synaptic connectivity between object and concept, personal identity and the social collective.
Her research is situated at the intersections of contemporary social and cultural theory, new media, narrative theory, museum studies, architectural & placemaking design, and philosophical issues of memory, aesthetics, educational theory, and database ecosystems. She founded Hinterculture, an arts collaboration that explores cultural mapping stories based in the Mojave desert, DEHSART an eco-art and discard studies engagement tool, and Yestermorrow, a speculative design program that explores feminist geography through research, physical and digital intervention, interpretation and presentation.
Her work has been shown at the Armory Center for the Arts, California State University Northridge, Cerritos College, For Your Art, Greene Exhibitions, Antelope Valley College Art Gallery, the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, the Lancaster Museum of Art and History, the Torrance Art Museum, and in numerous public art settings outside galleries and museums. She has received commissions from the City of Lancaster, the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, the OUTreach Center, Waste Management, and private collectors. She has published articles as an arts journalist for KCET Artbound, the peer reviewed ARID: A Journal of Desert Art, Design and Ecology, and the Journal of Aesthetics and Protest.
She is currently an instructor in the Arts and Humanities Division at Antelope Valley College and has organized numerous art exhibitions and public engagement programs at the AVC Art Gallery and the Lancaster Museum of Art and History. She has served as a volunteer for numerous nonprofit organizations such as the Museum of Contemporary Art, the J. Paul Getty Museum, the OUTreach Center, the Hispanic Outreach Committee at the City of Palmdale, as a Board of Director for the Lancaster Museum and Public Art Foundation, and has committed to diversity, equity, and civil service to involve all people and communities in educational art and cultural activities. She is currently a member of the LA County Arts and Culture 2020-23 CEII Advisory Committee, and a member of the Sustainability Advisory Group at Antelope Valley College.
She currently resides in a government drone corridor, and represents the US Department of Art and Technology as the Deputy Secretary of the Bureau for Recombinant Body and Collective Intelligence to report on unmanned design and technology.
Nickel is a 2023-24 Fellow of the CA Creative Corps, which is generously supported by the California Arts Council and administered by Community Partners.