Artist Statement:

I’m intrigued by the idea that everything is made up of the same elements. In this sense it is all somewhat interchangeable… everything is everything. Somehow this led to my interest in taking something established as truth, anything from a landscape, a map, a geographic detail, a word definition or passages from a book, and switching it around to abstract it.  Thus leading  to the idea that colors, shapes and symbols become abstracted when they are switched around.

I was always drawn to different found papers; maps and books, especially old ones. The smell of them, the textures the timeless qualities they hold. The places on the maps don’t necessarily exist anymore and the people who read and wrote those books maybe gone but the idea lives through the paper, this in itself is abstract. My goal is always to create balance and beauty using different papers and hopefully imbue those sentiments into the work.

In my quest to create I am searching for order in the universe, order being balance and beauty. My process is to work in series. The first piece is not the worst and the last piece is not the best but in the process I am able to map what works and what doesn’t. The freedom to experiment on a theme allows for previously unintended means to emerge. I am learning to embrace the imperfection too.

I am currently working on a series of reorgainzed, altered and fiction maps.


About the Artist:

Nicollette Smith grew up in Berkeley, CA. After finishing high school where she learned black and white photography, she traveled Europe on a quest for artistic inspiration. She began painting soon thereafter and has since explored a panorama of subjects and mediums. From black and white photography to figurative oil painting and now to mixed media Nicollette explores various motifs. She is especially drawn to an Asian esthetic.

She has attended many classes and workshops over the years and considers herself primarily self taught and self promoted. She has shown in various venues all over the San Francisco Bay Area where she continues to work and live.

Sitting in her studio, thinking, drinking tea, watching the gray bunny at her feet, leaning over maps, absorbed in work, she is not unlike the deceptively subtle and highly stylized works of art that she herself creates.


Nicollette has trained at numerous art workshops and at Berkeley City College, Laney College, and Diablo Valley College, although she considers herself largely self-taught.

Exhibition and Work:
  • “Tiny”, group show at Studio Gallery, Polk St. San Francisco, CA
  • group show, Bold Pop-Up, Berkeley, CA
  • solo show, LMI, Berkeley, CA (ongoing)
  • solo show, MEND, Berkeley, CA
  • solo show, Sweeties Art Bar, San Francisco CA
  • double exhibition , Live Worms Gallery, San Francisco, CA
  • “Bay Area Women Artists” juried by Donna Seager, O’Hanlon Gallery, Mill Valley, CA
  • solo show, LMI, Berkeley, CA
  • Solo Show, Remedy Salon, Emeryville CA
  • “Bay Area Women Artists” juried by Donna Seager, O’Hanlon Gallery, Mill Valley, CA
  • MOCHA Gallery Art Exhibit and Gala, Oakland, CA
  • “BLAGE”, Collage and Assemblage Show at O’Hanlon Gallery, Jurors: Cayen Robertson and Carolyn Planakis; Mill Valley, CA
  • Solo Show, Giorgi Gallery; Berkeley, CA
  • Solo Show, “Recent Works”; 1331 61st St., Emeryville, CA
  • Solo Show, Parkside, San Francisco CA
  • Group Show, 16th Annual Emeryville Art Exhibition, Emeryville, CA Curator: Paul Tomidy, Jurors: Seb Hamamjian, Director, Tercera Gallery, San Francisco Stephan Jost, Director, Mills College Art Museum, Oakland
  • Group Show, 15th Annual Emeryville Art Exhibition, Emeryville, CA. Curator: Paul Tomidy, Jurors: Lizabeth Oliveria, Oliveria Gallery, San Francisco Michelle Townsend, Director, HANG Gallery, San Francisco
  • Group Show, The Junius Gallery
  • Group Show, 14th Annual Emeryville Art Exhibition, Emeryville, CA Curator: Paul Tomidy, Jurors: Carlos Loarca, Director, SomArts Gallery, San Francisco Rachel Osajima, Director of Exhibitions, Richmond Art Center, Richmond
  • Group Show, The Junius Gallery
  • Pro-Arts Annual Open Studios; Oakland/Emeryville, CA
  • Group Show, 13th Annual Emeryville Art Exhibition, Emeryville, CA, Curator: Paul Tomidy
  • Group Show, The Junius Gallery
  • East Bay Open Studios
  • Group show, 12th Annual Emeryville Art Exhibition, Emeryville, CA, Curator: Paul Tomidy
  • Pro-Arts “New Visions”; Oakland, CA
  • Scenic painter for Duke Productions, Emeryville, CA
  • Scenic painter for “See” Productions, Las Vegas, NV and Scientific Art Studio, Berkeley CA.
  • Group Show, Bucci’s Emeryville, CA
  • Assisted large Sculpt for Calcus Studios, Paris France
  • Commissioned to produce original painting for private party
  • Painted decorative entry, sign, and window, Swan’s Way, San Francisco, CA
  • Assisted professional Sculptor on mold and finishing of 5 classical style sculptures, Michelangelo’s, San Francisco
  • Co-painted two murals for private client in Honolulu, HI.
  • Group Show, Mechanics Bank, Oakland CA