Allied Media Conference 2012 Opening Ceremony
|Education||University of California, San Diego|
Micha Cárdenas is an Assistant Professor of Interactive Media Design and Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences at the University of Washington's Bothell campus. Cárdenas is an artist and theorist who studies the movement (migration, performance, and mobility) of trans people of color in digital media.
Artwork and performances
Cárdenas has presented her work around the world, including keynote performances at the 2015 Association of Internet Researchers Conference, 2014 Digital Gender workshop at Umeå University in Sweden, 2013 Dark Side of the Digital Conference and 2012 Allied Media Conference, performances at the 2012 Zero1 Biennial in San Jose, and the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics 7th Encuentro in Bogotá, Colombia and collective exhibitions at the 2010 California Biennial, and the 2009 Mérida Biennial. In 2008, Cardenas performed Becoming Dragon, a 365 hour mixed reality performance in Second Life. Recent projects include "Unstoppable", a collaboration with Patrisse Cullors, Chris Head and Edxie Betts to create no-cost bulletproof clothing, Local Autonomy Networks  and virus.circus, a collaboration with Elle Mehrmand. She has also curated exhibits in Los Angeles, New York and Tijuana, Mexico.,
As a member of the Electronic Disturbance Theater/b.a.n.g. lab, she helped design the Transborder Immigrant Tool, a GPS device designed to guide immigrants illegally crossing the US-Mexico border and to help them find water stations during their journey. Cardenas argued that the aim of this project was "about giving water to somebody who's dying in the desert of dehydration," but which critics claimed was an irresponsible use of government funds, and a tool that would also help facilitate other illegal activity, like smuggling, as well. Ultimately, all investigations of the project were dropped without finding any misuse of funds or illegal activity on the part of the artists.
In 2014, Cárdenas published an essay titled "Movements of Safety" in the book Plants, Androids and Operators: A Post-Media Handbook by Mute Publishing. ISBN 190649696X The book includes essays from numerous theorists and artists working in the Post-Media Lab in Germany.
In 2013, Cárdenas' poetry and a statement on poetics was published in the anthology Troubling the Line: Trans and Genderqueer Poetry and Poetics ISBN 978-1937658106 by Nightboat Books. The editors describe the book as the first anthology of transgender and genderqueer poetry.
In 2012, Cárdenas' co-authored book The Transreal: Political Aesthetics of Crossing Realities, co-edited by Zach Blas, ISBN 0-9839152-4-5 was published by Atropos Press. The book discusses art, games and activism that use multiple realities, including augmented reality, mixed reality and alternate reality approaches.
Cárdenas has published several works related to the theoretical issues raised in her performances including "Becoming Dragon, A Transversal Technology Study" in the 2013 book Critical Digital Studies ISBN 978-1442614666 from University of Toronto press, and "I Am Transreal" in the book Gender Outlaws the Next Generation, edited by Kate Bornstein and S. Bear Bergman. Additional published works include "Technesexual Interface: Erotic Mixed Reality Performance", in Digimag.it co-authored with Elle Mehrmand.
Teaching and research
Cárdenas was a Lecturer in the Visual Arts Department and Critical Gender Studies Program at UCSD in 2009 and 2010. She was previously the Interim Associate Director of Art and Technology for the Culture, Art and Technology program at UCSD and a researcher at the Center for Research in Computing and the Arts, CalIT2 and the UCSD School of Medicine. Cárdenas also worked in the Experimental Game Lab at the Center for Research in Computing and the Arts on the Scalable City project.
Cárdenas earned her PhD at the University of Southern California in the Media Arts and Practice program where she was a Provost Fellow. She received her MFA at the University of California, San Diego in the summer of 2009, and holds a Master's degree in Media and Communications with distinction from the European Graduate School and a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science from Florida International University.
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