NIK RYE is a multimedia performance artist whose work addresses themes of traumatic growth, communal ethical dilemmas, and current & future dystopia under capitalism.
She is currently living in Tallahassee, Florida. She earned an AS in Graphic Design at Broward College; a BA in Studio Art at Florida State University; and is a current Studio Art MFA 2023 candidate at Florida State University.
Nik has exhibited her artwork in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, and Tallahassee. Recent exhibitions include Taste at Phyllis Strauss Gallery and Shape, Glaze, and Fire at 621 Gallery. She has also exhibited in Hang Your Bra at Little Haiti Cultural Complex and performed at All Access Miami, a national pro-choice event.
Between 2018 and 2019, she received three Silver Addy awards from the American Advertising Federation of Fort Lauderdale for her graphic design work. In 2018, her photography was published in P'an Ku magazine. Nik has also received multiple awards for Best of Class at Broward College within graphic design. She was previously the president of Broward College AIGA and president of FSU Clay Club.
In 2015, she received a medal from the ACLU for excellence in civil disobedience after refusing to stop sharing food with the homeless as an organizer for Food Not Bombs Fort Lauderdale.
Nik has been intermittently homeless since she was sixteen after experiencing an already traumatic and impoverished childhood. Before she graduated high school, she had moved over 50 times. Her upbringing and its consequences in her young adult life greatly inform her practice.
She would come to appreciate impermanence as a gift intrinsic to personal growth. Exposure to homeless criminalization and survival tactics assimilated with unique adventures allowing her to appreciate her homelessness overall, despite its bleakness. Homelessness introduced her to activism resulting in self-emancipation.
As an activist, she understood and harnessed the power of the spectacle. She believes the spectacle of protest is synonymous with performance art. Protest is performance and performance art has the capability to be a form of direct action.
Some fun facts:
+Nik is banned for life from the French Quarter of New Orleans after filming the mounted police harass a homeless man (& then spending two long days in the New Orleans Parish Prison). She has been arrested a total of 5 times for activist related reasons.
+She has ridden her bicycle across the state of Florida and from San Francisco to Portland, Oregon.
+She has ridden a motorbike across Vietnam (& greatly misses cafe sua da).
+Nik hopped trains and hitchhiked from South Florida to/across the Northeast. In NYC, she slept in front of the Trinity Church & camped in the Bronx.