Nico Wheadon


  • 4:30 p.m. MST
  • Zoom Webinar

Free and open to the public. Space is limited. Registration is highly encouraged.


Where Interior & Exterior Worlds Meet

For curator, educator, and writer Nico Wheadon, world building is an exercise in collective dreaming and action. Rather than centering any singular vision or perspective, her collaborative, interdisciplinary practice brings multiple—at times opposing—visions into dialogue. The worlds she collaborates with artists and institutions to build most readily take the shape of exhibitions, programs, curricula, and publications. Each is designed to produce engagement with—and scholarship around—contemporary Black art and culture. By embracing interdisciplinarity and cross-sector collaboration in this work, Nico has resisted a singular expertise; remained nimble in her professional engagements; engaged a diversity of collaborators; and cultivated a set of core values that guide her work in its many forms. Join her as she transparently discusses her journey, and shares tools for cultivating alignment between individual values and institutional practice.


Nico Wheadon is an independent art advisor, curator, educator and writer. She, alongside her partner Malik Lewis, is founder and principal of bldg fund LLC, an innovation platform for BIPOC artists, entrepreneurs and neighbors. Nico currently serves on the Board of Governors at the National Academy of Design, and the Advisory Board for the Lubin School of Business Transformative Leadership Program.

Nico is an adjunct assistant professor of Creative & Cultural Entrepreneurship in the Commons at Brown University; Freestyle & Displacement in Contemporary Art Practices at Barnard College; and Art & Place Reconsidered at Hartford Art School. She has also guest lectured at Yale, Princeton, MIT, NYU, Pratt, The New School and Howard. Beyond the classroom, Nico has lectured internationally on topics including: the future of museums; art and entrepreneurship; navigating risk in the nonprofit industrial complex; and building artist-led institutions. 

A regular contributor to The Brooklyn Rail, artnet News, and C&, Nico’s first manuscript—On Museum Citizenship: A Toolkit for Radical Art Pedagogy, Practice & Participation—is slated for publication in Spring 2021. The book brings together over forty pioneering voices from the field to reflect on canon-shifting practice currently taking place within, beyond, and through the museum space. 

In recent posts, Wheadon served as Inaugural Executive Director of NXTHVN (2019-2020); Inaugural Director of Public Programs and Community Engagement at the Studio Museum in Harlem (2014-2019); and Curatorial Director of Rush Arts Gallery (2007-2010).  

Wheadon holds an MA in Creative & Cultural Entrepreneurship from Goldsmith’s College University of London (2011), and a BA in Art-Semiotics from Brown University (2006).
Instagram: @nicowheadon

Virtual One-on-Ones

Wednesday, April 7, 2021
By appointment at various times
Deadline to sign up: Wednesday, March 31 2021.

Sign up here >

RMCAD students have the opportunity to meet (on Zoom) one-on-one with visiting designer Nico Wheadon.

This opportunity is available to any interested student looking to gain insight and perspective on their work through an in-depth conversation about art and ideas with this accomplished creative.

To reserve a one-on-one meeting with Nico Wheadon RMCAD students should fill out this form by Wednesday, March 31, 2021.

Students will receive a confirmation email after submitting a request. The VASD Program Committee will review submissions and selected students will be notified by Friday, April 2, 2021.

Please contact Gretchen Marie Schaefer at with any questions.

Next Day Q+A

Wednesday, April 7, 2021
11:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. MST

RMCAD faculty, staff, and students are invited to join the VASD Program and visiting artist Nico Wheadon for a Q+A session the day following her World Building series Artist Talk. This intimate gathering provides space to further discuss the ideas presented in the previous night’s lecture and an occasion to further engage with the artist. The RMCAD community is encouraged to attend with an open and curious mind, prepared to actively participate in a constructive and challenging conversation about art and culture.

For questions about accessibility or to request accommodations for this event, please contact Gretchen Marie Schaefer at

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For questions about accessibility or to request accommodations for this event, please contact Gretchen Marie Schaefer at or 303-995-8353. Requests should be made as soon as possible but no less than 5 business days prior to the scheduled event.

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