ACG 150

Jennifer Nelson

Experimental Arts
Associate lecturer, Visual Arts, Francis Rich School of Fine and Performing Arts, Deree | Member, Research, Technology & Innovation Network | Member Academic Advisory Board, Center of Excellence for Sustainability | Associate Lecturer and advisor to the curricular development of the Cinema Studies Program, Deree | Member, artist’s group The Guerrilla Optimists


+30 210 6009800 ext 1237


University of California, Los Angeles
MFA, New Genres
1996 – 1999

San Francisco Art Institute
BFA, New Genres
1994 – 1996

École Supérieure d’Art Visuel, Geneva Switzerland
3-D forms
1994 – 1996

Research Area: Experimental Arts

RTIN’s Experimental Arts research area focuses on artistic form-finding at the intersection of art, social sciences, politics, ecology and new technologies. It welcomes art research that transcends disciplinary categories or shifts narratives, problems and paradigms for art production and reception. Involved areas range from holistic, systems-based explorations connecting art with social and ecological contexts, the transformation of cultural experiences through new technology as well as the incorporation of new technologies within traditional disciplines, art inquiries that expand beyond a human-centered sensory range or aesthetic expectations, and art that addresses existential and/or moral well-being for diverse audiences and practitioners. The Experimental Arts research area centers around disciplines originating within the Francis Rich School of Fine and Performing Arts and Cinema Studies, with the expectation that projects will locate original points of intersection with other disciplines in order to generate new knowledge, experience and prototypes.



Jennifer Nelson co-developed the Visual Arts program at the American College of Greece, writing many of its founding and validated curricula. Her broadly applicable, experimental and interdisciplinary approach has also made her classes a requirement within multiple departments within the College. She recently served as a curricular advisor for the new Cinema Studies Program. Her classes dealing with audio-visual and new media look at technology holistically, exploring new expressive paradigms with an eye to the long-term impact on human culture and the environment.

Nelson danced with the Feld Ballet in New York and the Ballet du Grand Théatre in Geneva, Switzerland, and studied New Genres at the San Francisco Art Institute and at the University of California, Los Angeles, where she received her MFA.  She has exhibited in museums and festivals in the Americas, Europe and Asia, including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Kunsthalle Duesseldorf, Museo MADRE in Naples, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Athens, the State Museum of Contemporary Art in Thessaloniki, and the Galerie Nasional in Jakarta.  She was the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2003. She frequently collaborates with artists, experts from other disciplines (chemistry, Special Weapons And Tactics, music therapy, permaculture) and underserved communities. She is a co-founder of the Guerrilla Optimists, an improvisatory, urban intervention art collective. She has also collaborated with men from the Second Chance School in Korydallos prison and with residents at Nestor 1st Psychogeriatric Boarding House of Athens, both with the National Museum of Contemporary Art’s educational program EMST without borders. In Nelson’s cross-disciplinary artistic practice, she is committed to the playful realignment of social spaces through collective initiative and to the transformative possibilities of the individual act. Her deep-rooted interest in co-creation and its political, aesthetic, and social possibilities extend throughout her practice as an artist and teacher. Among many influences, her work has been significantly shaped by her direct personal experience with disruptive or transitional world choreographies. Having lived and worked in multiple countries, she has a lived understanding of fragile resources, natural and human, and the global sculptural flow of power and matter. These global flows must be linked and translated to a bodily scale for ethical action to begin. She is currently working on a project commissioned by the Goethe Institute Athen, in collaboration with her colleague Tim Ward, on an environmental film and workshop with a children’s choir to explore the legal voice of lifeforms within the ecosystem of Mt. Hymettus.



The Dreamer’s Handbook, The Guerrilla Optimists, BOZAR / Outset.Greece, Athens, 2014.

The Limerick Cookbook, Nelson, Jennifer / Kotsaras, Dimitri, ISBN: 978-960-6654-85-5, e v + a Ireland, Futura Athens, 2008

Reality Needs Changing, Nelson, Jennifer, ISBN: 3-907053-28-1, Memorycage Editions, Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, 2003


Exhibitions/Festivals/Film festivals (Selected)

Athens Conservatory: Anatomy of Political Melancholy II

Grand Central Art Center, 20th Anniversary, Habeas Corpus–Legal Imagination

London Greek Film Festival, Official Selection, Experimental

Minikino Film Festival, Bali Indonesia, Official Selection, Experimental

Museo MADRE, Naples and State Museum of Contemporary Art, Thessaloniki: Transit-4, Project Room, Kotsaras and Nelson / Tibaldi

ASU Art Museum Social Studies 7: Jennifer Nelson Securing a Free State: The Second Amendment Project  

Open Art Gallery, Beijing: Open Art 10th International Performance Art Festival, week 6

Thessaloniki International Film Festival

BOZAR, Brussels: No Country For Young Men: Contemporary Greek Art in Times of Crisis

Benaki Museum: (Out)topias, Performance and Public Space

De Young Museum, San Francisco: Social Dream Lab ( From Athens, Greece)

City Museum Hof Van Busleyden, Mechelen: Newtopia: The State of Human Rights, chapter 3



Artist in residence–Grand Central Art Center, Cal State University Fullerton, 2019

Andy Warhol Grant awarded to the Arizona State University Museum “Social Studies” Artist Residence Program for 3 artist projects that include Nelson’s Securing a Free State: The Second Amendment, 2011

Guggenheim Fellow for Visual Arts, 2003

Artist in residence- Stiftung Laurenz-Haus, Basel, Switzerland, 2003


Recent Community Workshops

Project Rebound, Cal State University, Fullerton

Nestor Pscyhogeriatric Boarding Home

2nd Chance School at Korydallos Prison



Chapman University, Advanced New Genres, The Social Weave

Otis College of Art and Design, Small threads in the social fabric

Cal State University, Fullerton, Art, Discoveries in Failure

Research Seminar: Art and Collaboration in Practice, organized by EMST (Athens) and Whitechapel Gallery (London) Audience trauma and cultural “safe space”

European Union National Institutes for Culture, Culture of Integration Cluster, Having a voice: communal sound projects