Rebecca Najdowski (b. Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA) is an American/Australian artist whose work examines imaging technologies, the mediation of nature, and visualizations of the climate emergency.
Rebecca engages with the material and political implications of representing nature through photographic technologies. Using analog and digital materials — often counter to their intended use — her artworks offer alternative modes to habitual ways of seeing, and sensing, more-than-human nature.
Rebecca’s work has been presented internationally, including at the Aperture Foundation (New York), the Museum of Australian Photography (Australia), and Museum Belvédère (Netherlands). Rebecca’s practice has been supported by a Fulbright Fellowship to Brazil, an Artist Fellowship with the Center for Creative Photography (Arizona) and through residencies at Banff Centre (Canada); the Institute for Electronic Art at Alfred University (New York); and Kala Art Institute (California).
Rebecca was raised on the traditional lands of the Pueblo people in northern New Mexico, USA and currently lives and works on unceded Wurundjeri land in Australia.
2021 PhD, Visual Art
Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne
2010 Master of Fine Arts, Studio Art
California College of the Arts, San Francisco
2004 Bachelor of University Studies
University of New Mexico, Albuquerque
2022 Deep Learning the Climate Emergency, Fed Square Digital Facade, Melbourne, Australia
2022 Ambient Pressure, Belfast Photo Festival, Botanic Gardens, Belfast, Northern Ireland
2020 Inverted Landscapes, Margaret Lawrence Gallery, Melbourne, Australia
2018 Interference Pattern, Horsham Regional Art Gallery, Horsham, Australia (two-person)
2018 Interference Pattern, Perth Centre for Photography, Perth, Australia (two-person)
2017 Give Them Distance, c3 Contemporary Art Space, Melbourne, Australia
2014 Desert Pictures, Lionel Rombach Gallery, Tucson, AZ, USA
2014 untitled (proposition), Steinfeld Warehouse, Tucson, AZ, USA
2013 Above/Below, S.H.E.D. Projects, Oakland, CA, USA
2010 Spectra, Hyde Street Gallery, San Francisco, CA, USA
Select Group Exhibitions and Screenings
Wild Hope: Conversations for a Planetary Commons, RMIT Design Hub Gallery, Melbourne, Australia
Regenerate, Noorderlicht Photo Biennale, Museum Belvédère, Heerenveen, Netherlands
Why Color?, The Center for Creative Photography, Tucson, AZ, USA
States of Disruption, Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne, Australia
Return to Nature, Monash Gallery of Art, Melbourne, Australia
Athens Photo Festival, Benaki Museum, Athens, Greece
The Censored Exhibition, Copenhagen Photo Festival, Copenhagen, Denmark
Encontros da Imagem — International Photography Festival, Galeria do Paço da UMinho, Braga, Portugal
Posthuman PUBLICS, Project Space, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia
CURRENTS 2019: Reimagined Histories | Rewritten Futures, Ogden Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans, LA, USA
The Qualities of LIGHT, The Center for Creative Photography, Tucson, AZ, USA
Beyond Boundaries, Aperture Gallery, New York, NY, USA
New Psychedelics, Humble Arts Foundation NY, online
I Can See for Miles, Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne, Australia
A Field-Guide to the Stars, Ballarat International Foto Biennale, Ballarat, Australia
#postfuture journey / Athens Digital Art Festival, Athens International Airport, Greece
FORMAT Festival: Habitat, Derby, England
Victory, Gaffa Photo Festival, Gaffa, Sydney, Australia
New Acquisitions, The Center for Creative Photography, Tucson, AZ, USA
Talking to Strangers, Simultan, Timisoara, Romania
Videograma: Territorio y Ciudad, UJTL, Bogota, and Barrio Granada, Cali, Colombia
Digital Native Film Festival, The Front, New Orleans, LA, USA
Radical Color, Newspace Center for Photography, Portland, OR, USA
Fauna, Smith Andersen North Gallery, San Anselmo, CA, USA
Night Contact, Brighton Photo Biennial, Brighton, England
Set in Motion: Video Art & Experimental Film, Purdue University Fountain Gallery, Lafayette, IN, USA
Trestle Video Art Screening, Trestle Gallery, Brooklyn, NY, USA
X Media Art Monographic Show, Festival Internacional de la Imagen, Manizales, Colombia
Return of the Winter Wrens, Nightingale Gallery, East Oregon University, La Grande, OR, USA
Crystal Palace, Center for the Digital Arts, SUNY Westchester Com College, Peekskill, NY, USA
Faculty Exhibition, University of Arizona Art Museum, Tucson, AZ, USA
Wood Anniversary, The Art Gym, Marylhurst University, Marylhurst, OR, USA
Thinking Like the Universe, Hatch Gallery, Oakland, CA, USA
InLight, 1708 Gallery, Richmond, VA, USA
Crystal Palace, ArtSpace, New Haven, CT, USA
New Codes* / Athens Digital Art Festival, Athens, Greece
Kaleidoscope, ArtPadSF, Hungryman Gallery, San Francisco, CA, USA
Hypothesis, The Lab, San Francisco, CA, USA
Peripheral Vision, Togonon Gallery, San Francisco, CA, USA
Golden State, RVCA, San Francisco, CA, USA
Everything Never Goes Away, Lost Coast Culture Machine, Ft. Bragg, CA, USA
MFA Thesis Exhibition, California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA, USA
Hearsay of the Sun, Queens Nails Projects, San Francisco, CA, USA
Groundswell, Kala Gallery, Berkeley, CA, USA
2021 The Image Looks Back, RMIT Gallery, PHOTO 2020 International Festival of Photography, Melbourne, Australia (co-curators: Dr Alison Bennett, Dr Shane Hulbert, Professor Daniel Palmer)
2019 To The Moon and Back, Ballarat Municipal Observatory and Museum, Ballarat International Foto Biennale, Ballarat, Australia (co-curated with Dr Colleen Boyle)
2017 A Field Guide to the Stars, Ballarat Municipal Observatory and Museum, Ballarat International Foto Biennale, Ballarat, Australia
Fellowships / Residencies
2019 Banff Centre Artist Residency “Digital Promises”, Banff, Canada
2013-2015 Artist Fellow, The Center for Creative Photography, Tucson, AZ
2014 Artist Residency, Kala Art Institute, Berkeley, CA
2013 Artist Residency, Signal Fire, Montana
2013 Artist Residency, Institute for Electronic Arts, Alfred University, New York
2012 Artist Residency, Signal Fire, Oregon, USA
2010-2011 Fulbright Fellowship, Installation Art, Brazil
2010-2011 Artist Residency, CAPACETE, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The Museum of Australian Photography, Melbourne, Australia
The Center for Creative Photography, Tucson, Arizona, USA
The Fidelity Art Collection, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
El Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Bogotá (MAC), Bogotá, Colombia
Bibliography — Books, Chapters, and Journals
2023 Dunne, Matt and Callum Beaney, editors. Site Specific: Photography Exhibitions from Around the World. Melbourne: Tall Poppy Press, 2023.
2017 Orchard, Christopher, and James Holcombe. “Photographic Reflections on Landscape Change in Regional Australia.” In Ecological Entanglements in the Anthropocene: Working with Nature, edited by Nicholas Holm and Sy Taffel, 153–154. Lexington, MA: Lexington Books, 2017.
Bibliography — Press
2022 Widisto, Aushaf. “Postscript for a Postscript.” Review of SPECTRA: Multiplicity 2022, Australian Network for Art & Technology. Web.
2022 “The Voice of Nature: Rebecca Najdowski.” ARTDOC Magazine, June 8. Web.
2021 Neave, Kate. “Future Refresh: A Studio Visit with Rebecca Najdowski” for “Unearthed: Eco-visionaries” series, OpenLab (interview). Web.
2021 Dunne, Matt. “Rebecca Najdowski.” Tending to the Garden (interview). Web.
2019 Hernandez, Ciel. “Weathering Photographs: Ambient Pressure by Rebecca Najdowski.” Lomography Magazine, April 15. Web.
2019 Lachowskyj, Cat. “Ambient Pressure.” LensCulture. Web.
2015 Crum, Maddie. “Meet the Contemporary Photographers Experimenting with ‘Radical Color’.” The Huffington Post, May 25. Web.
2015 Kail, Ellyn. “Electrifying Photograms Made from Desert Minerals, Flora, and Fauna.” Feature Shoot, April 23. Web.
2013 Motley, John. “Signal Fire Heats up Artists’ Connection to Nature, Wood Anniversary.” Wood Anniversary review, The Oregonian, March 8. Print.
2011 “Photograms by Rebecca Najdowski.” Juxtapoz Magazine, August 29. Web.
2011 Hodgson, Simon. “Moving Pictures: Rebecca Najdowski Reflects on Her Fulbright in Brazil.” California College of Arts News, July 18. Web.
2010 Baker, Kenneth. “Cameraless ‘pictures’.” Peripheral Vision review, San Francisco Chronicle, October 16. Print.
2010 Tilghman, Parker. “Illusive and Stunning.” Peripheral Vision review, Art Slant, October 11. Web.
2010 Cheng, DeWitt. “Kala Gallery’s Rising Tide.” Groundswell review, East Bay Express, June 9. Web.
2010 Beltrane, JD. “Pay Attention.” CCA MFA exhibition review, SF Gate, May 14. Web.
Research and Writing
Najdowski, Rebecca (2021), ‘Indeterminate: Flora, 3D scanning and the instability of data’, Journal of Environmental Media, 2:1, p. 131–145.
Najdowski, Rebecca (2020), Inverted Landscapes: Photomedia and the More-than-representational, University of Melbourne, PhD Dissertation.
Najdowski, Rebecca (2018), ‘Surfacing’, Antennae: The Journal of Nature in Visual Culture, 45, p. 11–17.
Vuorinen, Jane and Rebecca Najdowski (2018), ‘Surface Tension: Material Intra-Actions within Photography’, RUUKU: studies in artistic research, 9, online.
Najdowski, Rebecca (2016), ‘The Analogue: Photography as an Analogy for Earth Processes’, Fusion Journal, 10, p. 267–278.
© Rebecca Najdowski 2023