Artist Bio

Nicole Jean Hill was born and raised in Toledo, Ohio. She received a BFA in photography from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design and an MFA in Studio Art from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her photographs have been exhibited throughout the U.S., Europe, Canada and Australia, including Gallery 44 in Toronto, the Australia Centre for Photography in Sydney, and the Blue Sky Gallery in Portland, Oregon. Her work has been featured in the Magenta Foundation publication Flash Forward: Emerging Photography from the U.S., U.K., and Canada, the Humble Art Foundation’s The Collector’s Guide to Emerging Photography, and National Public Radio. Hill has been an artist-in-residence at the Center for Land Use Interpretation in Wendover, Utah, the Ucross Foundation in Wyoming, and the Newspace Center for Photography in Portland, Oregon. She currently resides in Humboldt County, California and is an Associate Professor of Art at Humboldt State University.


Artifacts & Incidents is a series that explores the evidence of human and animal activity along the boundary between public and private land on the outskirts of rural communities throughout the American West.  The project includes landscape photographs of sites throughout the Great Plains, Rocky Mountains, Pacific Northwest, and Alaska. Also included are still life photographs of objects that were used as target practice at makeshift shooting ranges that were discovered while traveling in these places. The photographs were made with a 4x5 field camera and 6x7 medium format camera and are archival pigment prints on exhibition fiber paper sized to 22” x 22” to 22” x 28”.


I create photographs along the periphery of rural communities in the western United States - the spaces nestled between national forest lands and private property or the easement zones along county roads and greenbelts. Existing as neither private nor public, these liminal spaces simultaneously imply autonomy and lawlessness. Without a clearly defined function, these borderlands are an overlap of unruliness and regulation. They contain evidence of the disruptive character of human activity, efforts at cultivation, and the inherent wildness of an environment.

My photographs are of subtle and aggressive relationships within the natural world. They document the natural movement of land, disturbances within its contours, and discarded objects contained within. The source of action that has defined or altered a site or object is often unclear.

Within each frame and throughout the series, the familiar and the ominous coexist. My goal is to create implied narratives of the orderly and untamable. It is through this visual investigation that I question the nature of nature and the desire to define the boundaries between the knowable and unpredictable landscape.



2004 MFA University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

2000BFA Nova Scotia College of Art and Design

Selected Solo and Two Person Exhibitions

2014Fairbanks Gallery, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR

2012 The Front, New Orleans, LA

Piante Gallery, Eureka, CA

Workspace Gallery, Lincoln, NE

2011Milepost 5, Portland, OR

2009 Morris Graves Museum of Art, Eureka, CA

2008 Blue Sky Gallery, Portland, OR

Shotgun Space, Los Angeles, CA

2007 Piante Gallery, Eureka, CA

2006 Gallery Sottoportego, Venice, Italy

Silver Eye Center for Photography, Pittsburgh, PA

2005 Gallery 44 Centre for Contemporary Photography, Toronto, ON

2000Visual Arts Nova Scotia, Halifax, NS

Selected Group Exhibitions

2012San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery, San Francisco, CA

Rhode Island School of Design Museum of Art, Providence, RI

Tanner Hill Gallery, Atlanta, GA

2011 Tanner Hill Gallery, Chattanooga, TN

Root Division, San Francisco, CA

First Street Gallery, Eureka, CA

2010Wallspace Gallery, Seattle, WA

23 Sandy Gallery, Portland, OR

Reese Bullen Gallery, Arcata, CA

2009 The Front, New Orleans, LA

2008Lennox Contemporary, Toronto, ON

Galerie Art Mur, Montreal, Quebec

Kathleen Cullen Fine Art, New York City

Griffin Museum of Photography, Boston, MA

2007 Newspace Center for Photography, Portland, OR

Atlanta Celebrates Photography Public Arts Project

Holter Museum of Art, Helena, MT

2006 Australian Centre for Photography, Sydney

Bemis Underground, Omaha, NE

Newspace Center for Photography, Portland, OR

Jen Bekman Gallery, New York City, NY

The Print Center, Philadelphia, PA


2012Exposure, Journal of the Society for Photographic Education, Spring 2012

2010 Deep Ecology, Watershed Media, Healdsburg, CA 2010

2009 Blue Sky 08/09, Oregon Center for the Photographic Arts, Portland, OR, 2009

2008 The Collector’s Guide to Emerging Art Photography, Humble Arts Foundation,

New York, NY 2008

Flash Forward 2008: Emerging Photographers from the United States, United

Kingdom and Canada, Magenta Foundation for the Arts, Toronto, ON

2007 Paper Placemats, J&L Publishing, Atlanta, GA, 2007


2013Lafayette College, Easton, PA

2012Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts, Saratoga, WY

2011 The Homestead, Talkeetna, AK

Newspace Center for Photography, Portland, OR

Ucross Foundation, Sheridan, WY

2006 Center for Land Use Interpretation, Wendover, UT


2012Encampment Museum, Encampment, WY

University of Nebraska – Lincoln

Metropolitan Community College, Omaha, NE

2011Newspace Center for Photography

Ucross Foundation, Sheridan, WY

University of Colorado at Colorado Springs

2009 Morris Graves Museum of Art, Eureka, CA

2008 Blue Sky Gallery, Portland, OR

University of Colorado at Colorado Springs

2006 Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, Omaha, NE

2005 Depauw University, Greencastle, IN

University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill

Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, Omaha, NE

2004 Metropolitan Community College, Omaha, NE

2003 Canine Cultural Studies, University of North Carolina-CH

Graduate Art Student Association, University of North Carolina

Nicole Jean Hill, St. Peter’s Dome, Archival Pigment Print, 24” x 24”, 2012

Nicole Jean Hill