Nicole Thomas (she/they) is an interdisciplinary artist, writer, and educator practicing in Minneapolis, MN. Their work centers Southeast Asian diaspora in the United States; mixed race and LGBTQIA+ narratives; and mental health effects of generational trauma. Artwork coming from her studio balances the act of play and memory processing. She strives to answer questions about how to provide comfort and grounding spaces for marginalized, underserved communities through various sensory experiences.
They hold a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD). During their thesis year at MCAD they were the Assistant Director at City Wide Artists, where she curated and produced exhibitions featuring artists who referenced contemporary sociopolitical issues. Her critical writing and reviews have been published by INREVIEW and MPLSART. More recently, she was an artist-in-resident at the Chautauqua School of Art in Chautauqua, New York. In 2021, she received the Creative Support for Individuals grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board and the Arts Impact for Individuals from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council. Their work has been exhibited at various galleries including Fowler-Kellogg Art Center, Textile Center, Fresh Eye Gallery, Rosalux Gallery, Regis Center for Art at the University of Minnesota, and Public Functionary.
Working collaboratively with the community is an integral part of Thomas’ practice. They facilitate art activities in-person and virtually for participants of all ages. Teaching is a way for her to connect with the community’s stories. Her style of teaching encourages curiosity, playfulness, and creative storytelling, and problem solving. In addition to teaching, they work closely with Emerging Curators Institute advocating for accessibility to the curatorial field and MidWest Mixed supporting programs surrounding mixed race and multiracial identities.
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