Nikki Gamboa

Nikki Gamboa (b. 1997) is an interdisciplinary visual artist engaged in artistry’s failures and possibilities. Their work is informed by art and activism through the lens of Latinx and migrant politics. They’re interested in the role of artist and viewer within the dynamics of participatory and community engaged art. They’re delighted by the marriage of paint and sculpture, and are currently an MA candidate in the Aesthetics and Politics program at CalArts (‘22).


¿Sigue disponible?

¿Sigue disponible? challenges the luxury that is art-for-art's-sake, afforded only to the privileged members of capitalist society in a series of 5 multimedia pieces. As a Latinx visual artist, my attempts to participate solely in aesthetics, and to be featured in mainstream galleries, have produced works exorcised of identity, politicality and collectivity. In my experience of abandoning class, kin and identity in order to conform and produce commodities, I now identify the assimilative nature prescribed by capitalist hegemony. I propose this is divided from the social dimension of art, exorcised from the collective in an act of self-involvement over critical engagement. The luxury of creating simply to create is thus at too high a cost for those whose kin is under constant violent oppression. Our attempts to produce easily consumable fine art is interrupted by the stronger call for action. In marrying 2D and 3D work, I work to push both the boundaries of medium and engage with exclusion.

Photos by Irene Fedyshyn (she/they)

Air-dry clay, foam, oil paint, acrylic paint, spray paint and pastels on canvas