August 7, 2020 – Sin Sol, my new art game, is now available on the App Store! It was created in collaboration with the Critical Realities Studio. Download it, go outside and walk through this story of a trans Latinx AI dealing with a climate apocalypse. Sin Sol uses an intersectional lens to consider how climate change intersects with race, gender, immigration and trauma.
April 15, 2020 – Listen to my first electronic music album at michacardenas.bandcamp.com reflecting on the time of COVID, quarantine feelings and personal loss. Please share!
April 9, Toronto, Ontario
Inter-Arts Exhibition, Tangled Arts & Disability
February 13, New York, NY
Ecofeminisms Panel, The Feminist Art Project Day of Panels, College Art Association Conference
November, Scotland [Online]
Workshop, Survival Strategies as Poetics in a Pandemic, Indeterminate Futures / The Future of Indeterminacy, University of Dundee
October, Arizona [Online]
Miranda Joseph Endowed Lecture, University of Arizona
September, San Francisco [postponed]
AFTER LIFE, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
May, Copenhagen [postponed]
Alt_Cph Biennial 2020
May 28-30, Chicago, Illinois [postponed]
Errant Voices Conference, University of Chicago
May 23, Montreal, Quebec [postponed]
Keynote, Queerness in Games Conference
April, Berkeley, California [postponed]
Keynote, Queer Ecologies / Feminist Biologies Workshop
Living Room Light Exchange
Visual and Media Cultures Colloquium, UCSC
March, Washington DC
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Women Filmmakers Festival
January, Stanford, California
“Poetic Operations” at Feminist/Queer Colloquium, Stanford Humanities Center
January, Ann Arbor, Michigan
“Taking a Stand”, exhibition at Stamps Gallery
June 2020: Watch my keynote at the Vision and Technology: Towards a More Just Future” conference organized by Eyebeam and the International Center for Photography here (starts one hour in). Hear me read excerpts from my forthcoming art game Sin Sol at the Henry museum in Seattle, here.
March 7 2020: My game Redshift and Portalmetal will be on display at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in DC! Go see it!
March 2019: Read a review of the prototype of my game Sin Sol, titled “Sin Sol, Forest Memory” in Art in America, “In This Mess Together: Interspecies Entanglements at Henry Art Gallery”! Read a new interview with me in Clot Magazine!
micha cárdenas, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Art & Design: Games + Playable Media, and Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she directs the Critical Realities Studio. cárdenas is writing a new algorithm for gender, race and technology. Her book Poetic Operations, forthcoming from Duke University Press, proposes algorithmic analysis as a method for developing a trans of color poetics. cárdenas’s co-authored books The Transreal: Political Aesthetics of Crossing Realities (2012) and Trans Desire / Affective Cyborgs (2010) were published by Atropos Press. She is a member of the artist collective Electronic Disturbance Theater 2.0. Her artwork has been described as “a seminal milestone for artistic engagement in VR” by the Spike art journal in Berlin. She is a first generation Colombian American.
cárdenas is an artist/theorist who was the winner of the 2016 Creative Award from the Gender Justice League. She was the recipient of the inaugural James Tiptree Jr. fellowship in 2014, a fellowship to provide support and recognition for the new voices in science fiction who are making visible the forces that are changing our view of gender today. She has been described as one of “7 bio-artists who are transforming the fabric of life itself” by io9.com.
cárdenas completed her Ph.D. in Media Arts + Practice in the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of Southern California. Her solo and collaborative artworks have been presented in museums, galleries, and biennials including the Stamps Gallery (2020); Thessaloniki Biennial (2019) in Greece; Arnolfini Gallery (2019); De La Warr Pavillion (2019); Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (2018); House of Electronic Arts Basel (2018); Zeppelin Museum Friedrichshafen (2018); Henry Art Gallery (2017); the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2015); ZKM Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe (2014); Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (2011); Centro Cultural del Bosque, Mexico City (2015); CECUT, Centro Cultural Tijuana, Mexico (2009); the Zero1 Biennial, San Jose, CA (2012); and the California Biennial, Newport Beach, CA (2010). She has given keynote talks at the Allied Media Conference, the Association of Internet Researchers, the Digital Gender Conference at Umea University in Sweden, the Dark Side of the Digital Conference, and the Vera List Center at the New School in New York. She is on the advisory boards of FemTechNet and the York University Center for Feminist Research.
cardenas’ poetry has appeared in the anthologies Troubling the Line, The &Now Awards 3, Trans Bodies, Trans Selves and Writing the Walls Down. She has published book chapters in Plants, Androids and Operators – A Post-Media Handbook, Gender Outlaws: The Next Generation, Queer Geographies, The Critical Digital Studies Reader and the Feminist and Queer Information Studies Reader. Her articles have been published in Transgender Studies Quarterly, GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies, CTheory, the Media-N Journal, the Ada Journal of Gender, New Media and Technology, The Journal of Popular Music Studies, and the AI & Society Journal, as well as the magazines Terremoto, No More Potlucks, Mute Magazine and Make/Shift Magazine.
In 2015 micha was a visiting scholar in the Faculty of Information at the University of Toronto, and a MacArthur Foundation HASTAC Scholar. In 2013 micha was a fellow at the Post Media Lab at Leuphana University in Germany, a New Directions Scholar at the USC Center for Feminist Research and a HASTAC Scholar. She holds an MFA from University of California, San Diego, an MA in Communication from the European Graduate School and a BS in Computer Science from Florida International University. She tweets at @michacardenas.
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Previous Talks, Performances and Exhibitions
September 14 – December 15, Bristol, UK
Arnolfini Gallery, Still I Rise: Feminisms, Gender and Resistance, Act 3
December 3, Santa Cruz
Leonardo Art & Science Rendezvous
November 14-17, San Francisco
National Women Studies Association, Panel, “Field Formations, Field Futures: Transgender Studies and the Foundational Work of Susan Stryker”
November 10, 2019, Honolulu
American Studies Association, Presidential Session: Worldmaking and Radical Futures
November 9, 2019, American Studies Association, Panel “Reimagining the Digital: Queer and Trans Digital Reformulations”
October, Thessaloniki, Greece
August, New York
Leslie Lohman Museum, New York, NY
April 1-19, London
Ecofutures Festival, The Art Pavilion, London, England
February 9 – May 27
Still I Rise: Feminisms, Gender and Resistance, Act 2, East Sussex
October 27, 2018 – April 28, 2019, Seattle
Between Bodies, Henry Art Museum
February, New York City
Refiguring the Future, Exhibition and Conference
NWSA Plenary, “The Future of Gender”
October, Washington DC
“Bodies that Matter” speaker series, College of William and Mary
October, Mexico City
E-cuerpo + Wear-D, Wearable Electronics Conference and Workshop
January – April, Basel
House of Electronic Arts, “Future Love: Desire and Kinship in Hypernature”
April, Washington DC
DC Queer Studies Symposium, Plenary
“The Politics of Human Thriving”, Center for the Humanities at Grinnell College
March 14, Toronto
Society of Cinema and Media Studies, Machineries of Identity / Cultures of Visuality panel.
November 19, Baltimore
“40 Years After Combahee” National Women’s Studies Association Annual Conference
Panel: Trans of Color Feminisms for Black Trans Women’s Lives
November 17, Chicago
Keynote, Digital Humanities and Computer Science Colloquium 2017
November 12, Chicago
“Pedagogies of Dissent” American Studies Association Annual Meeting
Panel: “Lana and Lilly Wachowski’s Cinematic Pedagogy of Dissent”
October 27, Alberta
Keynote, Crossing Boundaries Symposium, University of Lethbridge Faculty of Fine Arts
September 24, Los Angeles
Contemptorary at Human Resources Gallery
August 16, Berkeley
Keynote: UC Berkeley Summer Institute in Digital Humanities
May 25-29, San Diego
International Communication Association: Interventions
March 22, Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst, Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies department, Trans* Speaker Series
February 3, Seattle
Affect and Audience in the Digital Age: Activist Poetics
January 13, Seattle
We Stand Together, Racial Justice Teach-In, University of Washington
December 2-3, Eugene
2016 James Tiptree Jr. Symposium: A Celebration of Ursula K. Le Guin
November 17-20, Denver
American Studies Association: “ASA Program Committee: Trans* of Color Scholarship Home/Not Home in Trans* Studies”
September, Miami, FL
“TQ/Latinx Futures” 5 day workshop, ArtCenter/South Florida
September 7-10, Tucson, AZ
Trans* Studies: International Transdisciplinary Conference, “Trans of Color Scholarship” Plenary, “Poetics of Trans Pedagogies” panel.
May 20, New York City
Keynote, Art in General, What Now? Symposium
April 1, Los Angeles, CA
Necessary Hybridity at AWP
March 14, Lewiston, Maine
Bates College, Intersectional Approaches to Computational Studies
February 9, Chicago
Northwestern University, Performance Studies Lecture Series
October 2018: The background image on this page is Aura, the main character from my new AR game Sin Sol, drawn by Morgan Thomas and Modeled by Marcelo Viana Neto and Adrian Phillips!
My new #AR game, Sin Sol / No Sun, is coming soon! We’re releasing a preview titled “Sin Sol, Forest Memory”, @henryartgallery museum in Seattle Oct 26-27! Aura, the #trans latina AI hologram will tell players how she survived the #wildfires #climatechange #arkit #art collab w @AbrahamAvnisan @deathclxws
June 2018: It is with deep gratitude and joy that I want to announce that as of July 1st, I will be joining the faculty of UC Santa Cruz in the Art & Design: Games + Playable Media program! I’ll also be working with the Digital Art and New Media MFA and the Film and Digital Media PhD. I will miss my friends & colleagues at UW dearly, and I am so grateful for the friendship, mentorship and support that I experienced here. I am overjoyed to be going to the place where almost all of my biggest inspirations have taught: Gloria Anzaldúa, Angela Davis, Sandy Stone! Thank you so much to all of you who helped me make this new move in my life, you know who you are! <3 <3 <3
May 2018: Heading to NYC to give the keynote at the International Center of Photgraphy’s symposium Vision and Technology: Toward a More a just Future
February 2018: My new article “Monstrous Children of Pregnant Androids”, is out, in a special issue of GLQ about the Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando. My artworks Pregnancy and #stronger, are currently being exhibited at the House of Electronic Arts in Basel, Switzerland in the show “Future Love: Desire and Kinship in Hypernature”. My artwork Becoming Dragon is currently on exhibit at the Zeppelin Museum in Friedrichshafen, Germany, in the exhibition “Beautiful New Worlds: Virtual Realities in Contemporary Art”. The Simpson Center for the Humanities awarded myself and Abraham Avnisan a grant in support of our upcoming AR project, Sin Lluvia, about the intersections of climate change, migration and gender.
July 2017: My artwork Becoming Dragon was reviewed in the Spike art journal and described as “a seminal milestone for artistic engagement in VR.” In June, I presented plenary talks at the International Communication Association Conference in San Diego and at the Allied Media Conference in Detroit.
March 2017: Headed to UMass Amherst to do a talk on “Poetic Operations: Creative Strategies for Resisting Fascism in the US” and a performance of Pregnancy. I’m so grateful to the Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies department and Jeanine Ruhsam for inviting me!
November 2016: I won an award from the Gender Justice League of Seattle! Also, I have a new exhibition up at the Alice Gallery in Seattle, new publication in the Jump Cut Journal “Dilating Destiny: Writing The Transreal Body Through Game Design”, and I spoke at the American Studies Association Annual Conference!
October 2016: I am honored to be participating this week in the Comité Stratégico Internacional de Arte, Ciencia y Technologia / International Strategic Committee for Art, Science and Technology in Bogotá, Colombia for the Instituto Distrital de las Artes. Also, see this interview about my work from IAS at UW Bothell “Bulletproof art, technology and social justice” by Andrew Shinn.
September 2016: My new article, “Trans of Color Poetics: Stitching Bodies, Concepts and Algorithms” is available now!
May 2016: I am so honored to be in the new issue of Transgender Studies Quarterly, “Trans/Feminisms” alongside such brilliant scholars. My article is titled “Pregnancy: Reproductive Futures in Trans of Color Feminism”.
March 2016: Announcing the Poetic Operations Collaborative at the University of Washington Bothell! micha cárdenas directs this new design research lab, which applies technological creativity to advance social justice.
October 2015: Watch my talk at the Museum of Modern Art in New York at MoMA R&D. Listen to me being interviewed by Nia King, also on iTunes. Read this amazing response to my work by Nasrin Himada, “The Colour of Spatial Infinity is Red”.
August 2016: You can see my work in August in Berlin at the nGbK, and in Seattle at the Out of Sight Festival, the Center on Contemporary Art and until Summer 2017 at the Henry Art Gallery. Also, my collaborative publication “Queer OS: A User’s Manual”, , is now online!
December 18, 2015 – January 22, 2016: UNSTOPPABLE will be on exhibit at the INCA Institute in Seattle! Opening Friday, December 18, 7:30pm To exhibit or host this project, send me a message by using the contact form.