micha cárdenas, Ph.D.


January 2017: In my effort to get more autonomy from social media corporations, I’m starting my own mailing list to share announcements of my exhibitions, publications, workshops, performances, speaking engagements. Sign up here for the occasional email, generally once or twice a month.

March 2017: Headed to UMass Amherst to do a talk on “Poetic Operations: Creative Strategies for Resisting Fascism in the US” and a performance of Pregnancy. I’m so grateful to the Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies department and Jeanine Ruhsam for inviting me!

November 2016: I won an award from the Gender Justice League of Seattle! Also, I have a new exhibition up at the Alice Gallery in Seattle, new publication in the Jump Cut Journal “Dilating Destiny: Writing The Transreal Body Through Game Design”, and I spoke at the American Studies Association Annual Conference!

October 2016: I am honored to be participating this week in the Comité Stratégico Internacional de Arte, Ciencia y Technologia / International Strategic Committee for Art, Science and Technology in Bogotá, Colombia for the Instituto Distrital de las Artes. Also, see this interview about my work from IAS at UW Bothell “Bulletproof art, technology and social justice” by Andrew Shinn.

September 2016: My new article, “Trans of Color Poetics: Stitching Bodies, Concepts and Algorithms” is available now!

May 2016: I am so honored to be in the new issue of Transgender Studies Quarterly, “Trans/Feminisms” alongside such brilliant scholars. My article is titled “Pregnancy: Reproductive Futures in Trans of Color Feminism”.

March 2016: Announcing the Poetic Operations Collaborative at the University of Washington Bothell! micha cárdenas directs this new design research lab, which applies technological creativity to advance social justice.

October 2015: Watch my talk at the Museum of Modern Art in New York at MoMA R&D. Listen to me being interviewed by Nia King, also on iTunes. Read this amazing response to my work by Nasrin Himada, “The Colour of Spatial Infinity is Red”.


Upcoming Talks, Performances and Exhibitions


May 25-29, San Diego
International Communication Association: Interventions

March 22, Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst, Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies department, Trans* Speaker Series

February 3, Seattle
Affect and Audience in the Digital Age: Activist Poetics

January 22, Seattle
Henry Art Gallery, Poetry Reading: Este Suelo Secreto (To Be Human Once More) and excerpts from Pregnancy

January 13, Seattle
We Stand Together, Racial Justice Teach-In, University of Washington



micha cárdenas, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences and Interactive Media Design at the University of Washington Bothell, where she also directs the Poetic Operations Collaborative, a design research lab using inclusive design for social change. cárdenas is an artist/theorist who creates media art to reduce violence and increase health. Her book manuscript, currently under review, Shifting Poetics, uses practice-based research to understand trans of color movement—including migration, performance, and mobility—in digital media. cárdenas’s co-authored books The Transreal: Political Aesthetics of Crossing Realities (2012) and Trans Desire / Affective Cyborgs (2010) were published by Atropos Press. She is the winner of the 2016 Creative Award from the Gender Justice League. cárdenas was the recipient of the inaugural James Tiptree Jr. fellowship in 2014, a fellowship to provide support and recognition for the new voices in science fiction who are making visible the forces that are changing our view of gender today. She has been described as one of “7 bio-artists who are transforming the fabric of life itself” by io9.com. She is a first generation Colombian American.

cárdenas completed her Ph.D. in Media Arts + Practice in the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of Southern California. She is a member of the artist collective Electronic Disturbance Theater 2.0. Her solo and collaborative artworks have been presented in museums, galleries, and biennials including the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2015); ZKM Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe (2014); the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto (2014); Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (2011); Centro Cultural del Bosque, Mexico City (2015); CECUT, Centro Cultural Tijuana, Mexico (2009); the Zero1 Biennial, San Jose, CA (2012); and the California Biennial, Newport Beach, CA (2010). She has given keynote talks at the Allied Media Conference, the Association of Internet Researchers, the Digital Gender Conference at Umea University in Sweden, the Dark Side of the Digital Conference, and the Vera List Center at the New School in New York. She is on the advisory boards of FemTechNet and the York University Center for Feminist Research.

cardenas’ poetry has appeared in the anthologies Troubling the Line, The &Now Awards 3, Trans Bodies, Trans Selves and Writing the Walls Down. She has published book chapters in Plants, Androids and Operators – A Post-Media Handbook, Gender Outlaws: The Next Generation, Queer Geographies, The Critical Digital Studies Reader and the Feminist and Queer Information Studies Reader. Her articles have been published in CTheory, the Media-N Journal, the Ada Journal of Gender, New Media and Technology, The Journal of Popular Music Studies, and the AI & Society Journal, as well as the magazines No More Potlucks, Mute Magazine and Make/Shift Magazine.

In 2015 micha was a visiting scholar in the Faculty of Information at the University of Toronto, and a MacArthur Foundation HASTAC Scholar. In 2013 micha was a fellow at the Post Media Lab at Leuphana University in Germany, a New Directions Scholar at the USC Center for Feminist Research and a HASTAC Scholar. She holds an MFA from University of California, San Diego, an MA in Communication from the European Graduate School and a BS in Computer Science from Florida International University. She tweets at @michacardenasRead more…

Recent Talks, Performances and Exhibitions


December 2-3, Eugene
2016 James Tiptree Jr. Symposium: A Celebration of Ursula K. Le Guin

November 17-20, Denver
American Studies Association: “ASA Program Committee: Trans* of Color Scholarship Home/Not Home in Trans* Studies”

September, Miami, FL
“TQ/Latinx Futures” 5 day workshop, ArtCenter/South Florida

September 7-10, Tucson, AZ
Trans* Studies: International Transdisciplinary Conference, “Trans of Color Scholarship” Plenary, “Poetics of Trans Pedagogies” panel.

July 2016, Berlin
#Stronger at nGbK in contesting/contexting Sport 2016

May 20, New York City
Keynote, Art in General, What Now? Symposium

April 1, Los Angeles, CA
Necessary Hybridity at AWP

March 21, Buffalo, NY
Digital Performance Workshop, Techné Institute
PLASMA Speaker Series

March 14, Lewiston, Maine
Bates College, Intersectional Approaches to Computational Studies

February 9, Chicago
Northwestern University, Performance Studies Lecture Series

January 29th, Seattle
University of Washington, Affect and Audience in the Digital Age: Translational Poetics Symposium


December 18 – January 22, Seattle
UNSTOPPABLE Exhibition at INCA Institute

December 5th, Amherst
Hampshire College, Reality Would Have to Begin

November 12, Tacoma
University of Puget Sound, Trans Latinx Futures

October 21-24, Phoenix, AZ
Keynote: Association of Internet Researchers, IR16

October 15, Tacoma, WA
Tacoma Art Museum Art/Sci Salon

October 9-11, Toronto
Featured Speaker: 4th Biennial Meeting of the BABEL Working Group, “Off the Books”

October 8-11, Toronto
American Studies Association Annual Meeting, Panel: Digital Death Worlds: Mediating Necropolitics

October 8, Toronto
Redshift and Portalmetal performance hosted by e-fagia

October 2, Seattle
University of Washington | Bothell, Creative Writing and Poetics Fall Convergence

September 16, New York City

July 27-31, Indianapolis
Post/De/Colonial Digital Humanities with Roopika Risam, Humanities Intensive Learning and Teaching

June 26 – July 18, Kansas City
That Used to Be Us, Haw Contemporary

June 25, San Francisco
Mangos with Chili: All that You Touch You Change, National Queer Arts Festival

June 25, Toronto
That’s So Gay, Gladstone Hotel

June 11-12, Los Angeles
Machine Dreaming, UCLA

June 8-9, UC Davis
Master Class on Performative Technologies, MODlab

Recent Talks and Performances

April 30 – May 5, Los Angeles
Pregnancy and Redshift & Portalmetal in iMappening 2015

March 4 – April 4, Dresden
Boom, Bubble and Blast: Art Against the Crisis, Motorenhalle

March 27-29, Chicago
INCITE! Color of Violence 4: Women of Color and Trans People of Color Against Violence

March 25, Montreal
“Speculative Bodies: Trans and Queer of Color Digital Praxis”, panel at 2015 Society for Cinema and Media Studies Annual Conference

February 3, Los Angeles
Munroe Center for Social Inquiry at Pitzer College

Jan 21-24, Mexico City
Simposio Internacional de Téoria Sobre Arte Contemporáneo / International Conference on Contemporary Art theory and Practice

Jan 8-11, Vancouver
MLA 2015, Vancouver, “Queer OS: Queerness as Operating System”

2014 highlights

November 8-11, Montreal
HTMlles, opening night performance and workshop

October 14-16, Philadelphia
Visiting Artist at Temple University in Philadelphia, PA

August 18, Toronto
What Carries Us Through the World, OCAD

August 16, Toronto
Ill Nana DiverseCity Dance Company’s Performance Showcase

August 13, Toronto
Body Games 2 with Dames Making Games

July 1-15, Toronto
Artist in Residence, LGBT Intergenerational Residency, Artscape Gibraltar

June 19, Detroit
Trans Women of Color International Network Gathering, Allied Media Conference

May 9-11, Yellow Springs, Ohio
Living as Form (Nomadic Edition) Antioch College

May 1-3, Virginia Tech
Keynote, Gender, Bodies, Technology Conference, Virginia Tech

March 12-14, Sweden
Keynote, Digital Gender Theory and Practice, Umeå University, Sweden

Previous Updates

August 2016: You can see my work in August in Berlin at the nGbK, and in Seattle at the Out of Sight Festival, the Center on Contemporary Art and until Summer 2017 at the Henry Art Gallery. Also, my collaborative publication “Queer OS: A User’s Manual”, , is now online!

July 2016: #Stronger, my new project with the POClab, will be exhibited at nGbK in Berlin in the contesting/contexting Sport 2016 exhibition

December 18, 2015 – January 22, 2016: UNSTOPPABLE will be on exhibit at the INCA Institute in Seattle! Opening Friday, December 18, 7:30pm To exhibit or host this project, send me a message by using the contact form.