A sculpture resembling a hanging couch or hammock

Nicole Shaffer, "Furniture for Buoyancy," 2022; woven mylar and digital prints on pictorico, textile design by Maura O’Docharty on velour fabric using floral images from the archive of Luther Burbank, digital print on velour fabric by Stuart Shaffer, screen printed fabric made in collaboration with Leonard Reidelbach based on the 1960s fabric that the artist’s grandmother, Gladys Mullen, upholstered onto tiny furniture in an effort survive, rattan wicker work, woven rexlace, woven satin cord, strap buckle, mirror; 11 x 72 x 33 in

Nicole Shaffer

Graduate Fellowships, 2022 - 2023
San Francisco State University

Portrait of Nicole Shaffer

Artist Statement

I am a Bay Area interdisciplinary visual artist with a focus on research-based installations. My work offers space for poetic and phenomenal understanding while centering the nuance and beauty of non-normative and divergent temporalities and embodiments. By reconfiguring visual language from local archives and passed down craft techniques, I reclaim access to a sense of lineage and belonging historically denied to queer, gender variant, and mad lives.


While at Headlands

I’m excited to pursue my inquiry into the strange and disturbing practice of pathologizing plants in early 20th century Bay Area horticulture, using this as an entry point into considering the ongoing state enforcement of the “normal” as it relates to gender variant and mad bodies, and offering my revisions to stigmatizing narratives.I look forward to diving deeper into my creative research and completing a new series of sculptural works referencing domestic furniture and disorienting normative assumptions about functionality and how our unique bodies are meant to behave.