While in residence at Kala, Rivas plans to work on projects that will consist of photo-based installations revisiting pivotal events in recent U.S. immigration and human rights history. For this, he will use both analog and digital photographic images primarily from his own archive of photographs captured during a five-year period beginning ten years ago, as well as other collected historical images.
Neil “Clavo” Rivas is an interdisciplinary artist whose work stems from his roles as a documentarian, educator, and activist. Using photographic imagery, collected objects, and appropriated pop-culture iconography, he is invested in aesthetic politics and creating tactical interventions within social, cultural, and political contexts. His diverse projects have come in a range of forms, including multimedia installations, video, public interventions, web-based projects, performances, and community-based practices. Rivas’ work has been exhibited and performed at venues such as the Museum of Latin American Art; Museum of Art of El Salvador; Palacio Nacional de Guatemala; Cartoon Art Museum; UC Berkeley’s Arts Research Center; Yale University; SOMArts Cultural Center; LMU Laband Art Gallery; Galería de la Raza; and many other public, private, and independent spaces. His photography has been published widely and he has been the recipient of several awards, grants, and fellowships. His projects have been featured by The Huffington Post, NBC, CNN Español, Univision, MTV tr3s, ArtInfo International, Colorlines Magazine, Upworthy, NPR, SF Weekly, Art Practical, Daily Serving and more, including media throughout the Americas, Europe, Australia, and China. Rivas’ work has been acquired by Michigan State University Libraries, and exists in private collections in the U.S. and Austraila. He received his MFA in Fine Arts at California College of the Arts and his BFA in Art Photography from California State University, Long Beach.