People / Graduate Students

Graduate Students

Larissa Nez


Art History, Indigenous Studies, Black Studies, Cultural Studies, Race, Colonialism, Humanities

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Bio & Research Interests

Larissa is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley where she is the recipient of the Chancellor’s Fellowship and Katherine Sweeney Fellowship. She is currently the Digital Storytelling Fellow with Forge Project and Pathways Fellow with the Association of Moving Image Archivists. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Art History with a minor in Sociology from the University of Notre Dame and her Master of Arts in Public Humanities from Brown University.

Larissa’s doctoral research focuses on the connections between critical Indigenous theory, decolonial theory, and the Black Radical Tradition. Particularly, she is concerned with resistance and survivance expressed through modern and contemporary visual and performing arts, archival research that centers strategies of refusal and possibility, and the embodiment of memory and the interior life through the interpretation of sacred geographies/hydrologies/cosmologies as sites of geopolitical and social resistance but also sites where kinship and belonging emerge. Larissa is interested in articulating the ways that Afro-Indigenous, Black, and Indigenous peoples are developing new languages and forms of expression that ultimately heal and generate new ways of life and being.

Larissa is currently serving appointments on the Advisory Committee for the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture in Santa Fe, NM, the Advisory Council for the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame, the Native American Alumni Board of Directors for the University of Notre Dame, and the Student and Emerging Professionals Committee for the College Art Association.

Larissa is of the Mud People and born for the Mountain Cove People. Her maternal grandfather is of the Red Running into the Water People and her paternal grandfather is of the Big Water People. She was born and raised in a small, mountain community in the northeastern part of the Navajo Nation called Ni’iijííh Hasání (Sawmill, Arizona).