Indigenous Studies, Black Studies, Cultural Studies, Art History, Race, Colonialism, Humanities
Bio & Research Interests
Larissa Nez (Diné) 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 Diné Bikéyah (Navajo Nation). She 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.
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 the Digital Storytelling Fellow with Forge Project and Borderlands Curatorial Fellow with the Vera List Center for Art and Politics at the New School. She is also 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.
Nez, Larissa. “We Are Alive: Restoring Meaning and Life to Navajo Weavings (Tentative Title),” In Horizons: Weaving Between the Lines with Diné Textiles, edited by Dr. Hadley Jensen. Santa Fe, NM: Museum of Indian Arts and Culture and Museum of New Mexico Press, 2024.
Nez, Larissa. “Indigenous Power in Public Places,” In Jaune Quick-To-See Smith: A Retrospective, edited by Beth Huseman. New York, NY: The Whitney Museum of American Art, 2023.
Nez, Larissa. “The Aesthetics and Ethics of Representation, Reclamation, and Resistance: The Art of Jaune Quick-to-See Smith,” In Poetic Justice: Judith F. Baca, Mildred Howard, and Jaune Quick-to See-Smith, edited by Merry Scully. Santa Fe, NM: New Mexico Museum of Art and Museum of New Mexico Press, 2022.
Nez, Larissa. “Finding our Way Past Trading Posts.” Asparagus Magazine, Fall/Winter 2021. Vancouver, BC. https://asparagusmagazine.com/rethink-indigenous-artifact-trading-posts-in-the-american-southwest-true-impacts-83f24dc6d5a8.
Nez, Larissa. A Letter to My Freshman Self: Words of Wisdom from Sons and Daughters of Notre Dame about Learning, Loving, and Living under the Golden Dome. Edited by Jim Langford. 3rd ed. Notre Dame, IN: Corby Books, 2021.
Larissa Nez, Sophia Ellis, Rai Terry. “The Aesthetic of Power: Porcelain and the Expansion of White Saviorism.” Spark Magazine, May 30, 2021. National Center for Institutional Diversity. https://medium.com/national-center-for-institutional-diversity/in-the-late-18th-century-wedgwood-porcelain-became-a-desired-luxury-commodity-among-the-british-9d597c3fa2f4.
Nez, Larissa, Felicia Bartley, Alice Cole. Weetamoo Woods: More Than A Name. Methods in Public Humanities, Dec 2021. Brown University. https://bit.ly/3dn9UbL.
Nez, Larissa. “Be the Light: Volume 4.” We Are ND. University of Notre Dame, Apr 14, 2020. https://weare.nd.edu/stories/be-the-light-volume-4/#nez.
Nez, Larissa. “Exploitation of Native Imagery for Profit.” Terra Incognita Media, Sep 13, 2017. https://www.terraincognitamedia.com/features/exploitation-of-native-imagery-for-profit2017.
Awards and Honors
2022 Borderlands Curatorial Fellowship, Vera List Center for Art and Politics at the New School and the Center for Imagination in the Borderlands at Arizona State University
2022 Digital Indigenous Storytelling Fellowship, Forge Project
2022 Pathways Fellowship, Association of Moving Image Archivists hosted by the Navajo Nation Museum, Window Rock, AZ
2021 Andrew W. Mellon Reimagining New England Histories: Historical Injustice, Sovereignty and Freedom Fellowship, Munson Institute at the Mystic Seaport Museum, Brown University’s Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice, and Williams College
2020 Curatorial Fellowship, Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity, Brown University
2019 Andrew W. Mellon Native American Museum Fellowship, Minnesota Historical Society
2019 Extraordinary Service Award, Native American Initiatives, University of Notre Dame
M.A. Brown University May 2022
Advisor: Dietrich Neumann
B.A. University of Notre Dame May 2019
Minor in Sociology
Advisor: Elyse Speaks