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Jennifer Parker


Sculpture, Digital Arts/New Media, Founding Director, OpenLab Collaborative Research Center

Jennifer Parker is an artist and Professor of Art. She is the founding Director of UCSC OpenLab Research Center and served as Art Department Chair from 2012-2017.  She is currently helping spearhead The IDEA Hub for Social and Creative Entrepreneurship and the UC Placemaking Art & Design initiative, a new multi-campus research cluster implementing place-based artworks on UC campuses and the surrounding communities.

Parker served as principle faculty for the Digital Arts & New Media (DANM) MFA program where she directed the Mechatronicscollaborative research cohort from 2009-2015 developing research projects that combine art, design, science, and technology. She serves on the faculty advisory board for UCSC CITRIS and is an active board member for SOUNDWAVE, a San Francisco-based non-profit arts organization that creates meaningful, cutting edge art and music experiences through the activation of people, places and environments in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Parker maintains a multifaceted art practice at the intersection of art and science. From 2008-2012 she collaborated with artist Barney Haynes as SonicSENSE, an expandable and evolving site for art, culture, new technologies, collaboration, and participation. More recently Parker has been working as a founding member of The Algae Society: Bio Art and Design Collective. The Algae Society is a global collective of interdisciplinary researchers working together to establish a new community with algae, as a non-human international research partner.

For Parker, being an artist in todays world means thinking critically with compassion with a focus lens on climate change combining art and science to tell stories that reflect the challenges of all species living on the planet.

Education and Training: 
M.F.A. Rutgers University
B.A. College of Creative Studies, University of California Santa Barbara
Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture
Selected Publications: 

Parker’s work has been exhibited, performed and presented in Silicon Valley and the Bay Area in places such as the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, SF Camerawork, The LAB, Gray Area Foundation for the Arts, Bay Area Science Festival, SFMOMA, Southern Exposure, California Academy of Science, ZER01, Biennial, Tech Museum; Montalvo Art Center, Bay Area Maker Fair, Randall Museum, and Kala Art Institute. Internationally, Parker has shown at the de Baile in Amsterdam, Holland; The War Memorial Museum in Seoul, Korea; the World Trade Center in Osaka, Japan; the Iskra History Museum in Kazanlak, Bulgaria; Califia Galerie and Školská 28 Galerie in the Czech Republic; and Bellas Arts, Uiversidad Complutense, Madrid and the Sala de exposiciones Parque García Sanabria Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain.

She is the recipient of several grants, awards, and fellowships including Artworks NEA, NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates, Art Matters, New Forms Regional Grant administered by the Inter-Arts Program of the NEA, Epsilon/Alliance Environmental Art and Education, American Psychoanalytic Foundation Award, The New Jersey State Council of the Arts, and the Kate Neal Kinely Memorial Fellowship Award.

Teaching Interests: 

Old and new Media, Interactive Art, the Body, Sound, Sculpture, Interactive Art, Performance, and Kinetic Work

Elena Baskin Visual Arts E-106
Office Hours: 
Tuesdays and Thursdays 2:30pm - 3:30pm and by appointment
Mailing Address: 

Art Department

Baskin Visual Arts

UC Santa Cruz

1156 High Street

Santa Cruz, CA 95064