Nassem Navab
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Nassem Navab

Artists Statement for Refuge

The immigrant, entangled with feelings of fear, and the desire to attain order in a world where they often find themselves fleeing from chaos. These disparate feelings are captured through the use of familiar objects placed in a discordant environment. Throughout my life, my mother has used clear vinyl to cover the furniture in our home to protect it from wear and tear. The vinyl would only be removed when guests would come over. Using this act of protection and preservation as a metaphor, I meticulously wrapped domestic items in the same clear vinyl. Couches, rugs, clocks, curtains, and plants become separated from familiarity and, instead, encapsulate a paradox; each is guarded and sheltered by its covering, yet suffocated in its entrapment. Hand-sewn gold thread connects and binds the clear vinyl to the objects, an adornment, and act that is both tedious and attentive. Domestic items act as stand-ins for immigrant bodies and their internal state of discomfort and contradiction. These experienced traumas are either byproduct of systems we bring with us from the countries we fled or reactions
to the hostile conditions imposed on us in the country we fled to. A tension between
traditionalism and modernity emerges in Refuge . It infers a palpable testimony of human presence in a fragile, brutal life that immigrants endure when creating a home away from home.

Artist Bio

Informed by her Iranian American identity, New Media artist Nassem Navab critically engages with a wide array of social issues, from the policing of women’s bodies to self-expression and identity. She works in various mediums from 3D modeling, video, sound, found object, and photography. Navab received an MFA at the University of Arizona, and a BA in Interdisciplinary Computing Arts and Media from the University of California, San Diego.

Nassem Navab

CURRICULUM VITAE

Education
2019 University of Arizona, M.F.A. Studio
2014 University of California, San Diego, B.A. Interdisciplinary Computing Arts and Media

Exhibitions
2019 States of Matter, Yun Gee Park Gallery, Tucson, AZ
2019 From Here to Eternity, Museum of Contemporary Arts, Tucson, AZ
2019 Absher/Rejoice!, Museum of Contemporary Arts, Tucson, AZ
2019 Masters of Fine Arts Thesis Exhibition, Joseph Gross Gallery, Tucson, AZ
2018 Digital Disobedience: The Algorithm as Saboteur, CFA Downtown Studio, UNM, Albuquerque, New Mexico
2018 Theory and Practice of Third Space, Lionel Rombach Gallery, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
2018 5 min Film Festival, Museum of Contemporary Arts, Tucson, AZ
2018 Collect, Recollect, Steinfeld Warehouse Community Arts Center, Tucson, AZ
2018 Before Hours, The Loft Cinema, Tucson, AZ
2017 5 min Film Festival, Museum of Contemporary Arts, San Diego, CA
2017 Cover Protect Decorate, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, Tucson, AZ
2017 By Now We Are There, Museum of Contemporary Arts, Tucson, AZ
2017 Videohouse II, Deslave Gallery, Tijuana, MX
2017 On the Same Boat, Boathouse Gallery, Tucson, AZ
2017 Cinco or Swim, Graduate Gallery, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
2017 Blink Twice, The Loft Cinema, Tucson, AZ
2017 By Now We Are There, Graduate Gallery, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
2017 MFA Semester One, Lionel Rombach Gallery, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
2016-17 Someone To Ride The River With,
Lionel Rombach Gallery, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
Harry Wood Gallery, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ
CFA Downtown Studio, New Mexico University, Albuquerque, NM
2015 Borderland Noise, Mous Tache, Tijuana, MX
2015 Sueños de Cuerpos, The Raw Space, San Diego, CA
2014 BA Graduate Show, Mandeville Annex Gallery, UCSD, San Diego, CA

Residency and Workshops
2018 Experimental Animation & Video with Code, Casey Reas, Anderson Ranch Art
Center, Snowmass Village, CO

Publications
2018 Peace & Place, You Are Here: The Journal of Creative Geography.

Artist Talks and Events
2019 Yun Gee Park Gallery, Tucson, AZ. Invited
2019 Masters of Fine Arts Thesis Exhibition, Joseph Gross Gallery, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ. Invited
2018 You Are Here Journal 20th Anniversary Issue, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ. Invited
2018 18th Annual Southwest Graduate Conference in Middle Eastern and North African
Studies, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
2018 Events, Art + Feminism Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon, Poetry Center, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
2017 Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, Tucson, AZ. Invited
2016 <T> Here. CEART Tijuana, Tijuana, MX. Invited
2015 Concept and Issues, ART 201: Objects and Ideas, Mira Costa College, San Diego, CA. Invited

Grants and Awards
2018 Albert M Haldeman Photo Scholarship, Tucson, AZ.
2018 Medici Scholar Award, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.
2018 Helen Gross Award, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.
2017 Albert M Haldeman Photo Scholarship, Tucson, AZ.
2017 George Grant Memorial Photography Scholarship, Tucson, AZ.
2017 Medici Scholar Award, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.

Service
2019 Organizer, Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.
2018 Organizer, Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.
2018 Organizer, Women’s Hackathon, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.
2017-18 Infuse, MFA Studio Coordinator, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.
2015-16 Project P.A.I.N.T., Assistant, Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility, San Diego, CA.
2011-14 Books For Prisoners, Board Member, UCSD, San Diego, CA.