Kim Stringfellow San Mateo, California, b. 1963


Kim Stringfellow earned her MFA in art and technology from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She received an honorary doctoral degree from Claremont University in 2018.


For the past twenty years, Stringfellow’s research and practice has focused on the human-driven transformation of some of the American West’s most iconic arid regions through multi-year, research-based projects that merge cultural geography, public practice, and experimental documentary into creative, socially-engaged transmedia experiences. These art-centered projects combine writing, photography, audio, video, installation, mapping, and community engagement to collectively explore the history of place while also examining how the landscapes we inhabit are socially and culturally constructed. In particular, Stringfellow is interested in the ecological repercussions of human presence and occupation within these spaces. By focusing on distinct subjects, communities, or regions, she attempts to foster a discussion of the complex interrelated issues for each site while exposing human values and political agendas that form our collective understanding of these places.


Stringfellow’s projects have been commissioned and funded by leading organizations, including California Humanities, The Creative Work Fund, The Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, Los Angeles County Arts Commission, and the Seattle Arts Commission. In 2012, she became the second recipient of the Theo Westenberger Award for Artistic Excellence. The award honors the achievements of contemporary women whose work in photography, film, and new media transforms how we see the American West. To coincide with her receiving this award, Jackrabbit Homestead was exhibited at the Autry National Center’s Irene Helen Jones Parks Gallery of Art in 2015. She is a 2015 Guggenheim Fellow in Photography and a 2016 Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts Curatorial Fellow. Acting as project director for The Mojave Project, she received the prestigious California Documentary Project (CDP) Production Grant for New Media in 2015 and a CDP Research and Development Grant in 2014. She is co-editor for ARID: A Journal of Desert, Art and Ecology and a regular contributor to KCET’s Artbound. Stringfellow was featured in KCET’s LOST LA “Desert Fantasy,” hosted by Nathan Masters and released in October 2018.


Stringfellow’s work has been exhibited at the International Center for Photography (ICP), Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), LACE (Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions), Autry National Center, The Nevada Museum of Art, The John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Gagosian

(Madison Avenue), University of California, Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, University of California’s Riverside’s Culver Arts Center, The Santa Fe Art Institute, and MOAH (Museum of Art and History), among others. International exhibitions include Cubitt, London, UK; the Inter-Society for the Electronic Arts (ISEA) in Tallinn, Estonia; and the José Martí National Library in Havana, Cuba. Her photographs are included at Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Western Americana Collection; the Comer Collection of Photography at UT Dallas; University of California’s Riverside’s Culver Center for the Arts; the Altered Landscape Collection at the Nevada Museum of Art; and The Margulies Collection at the Warehouse in Miami, FL. Curatorial projects include After the Aqueduct at LACE (Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions) in 2015 and Digital State: New Faculty and Student Work at SDSU in 2003.


She is the author of two books, Greetings from the Salton Sea: Folly and Intervention in the Southern California Landscape, 1905–2005 and Jackrabbit Homestead: Tracing the Small Tract Act in the Southern California Landscape, 1938–2008, both published by the Center for American Places.