San Francisco–based painter Kate Nichols synthesizes nanoparticles to evoke colorful winged animals, grows artificial skin from microorganisms, and makes her own paints following 15th-century recipes. The long tradition of painters as material innovators inspired Nichols to become the first artist-in-residence in the Alivisatos Lab, a nanoscience laboratory at the University of California, Berkeley. In 2010, she was appointed a TED Fellow and was awarded a Jacob K. Javits Fellowship. Her artwork has been featured on the cover of the journal Nature and on the TED stage and is in the Leonardo Museum’s permanent collection. In 2015, Nichols was awarded the Richard Diebenkorn Teaching Fellowship, an honor SFAI extends to one early to mid-career painter each year.
About the Richard Diebenkorn Teaching Fellowship
Established in 1998 by the generosity of the family of Richard Diebenkorn, the fellowship provides artists both an opportunity to teach at the San Francisco Art Institute and sufficient time and financial support to work in the studio in alternating years through a residency at Headlands Center for the Arts. The Richard Diebenkorn Teaching Fellowship is funded by the generosity of the family of Richard Diebenkorn. Brad Kahlhamer will serve as the 2016 Fellow.
Kate Nichols, Promethean Aspiration, 2013, Silver nanoparticles paint on glass, Courtesy of the artist, Photo by Donald Felton