nicole mueller

"Thresholds" Opens September 7th at the Richmond Art Center by Nicole Mueller


I am excited to announce a new solo exhibition opening at the Richmond Art Center in September 2019, of a new body of work titled “Thresholds.” I’m grateful and honored to be showing my work at the Richmond Art Center, the East Bay’s largest visual art center, and which has been an important fixture in the Bay Area’s art scene for years, having exhibited work by artists like Joan Brown and Richard Diebenkorn early in their careers. “Thresholds” will open September 7th, 2019 and remain open until November 22nd, 2019. Here are more details on the show’s opening reception and special events:

September 10th – November 22nd, 2019

Opening Reception: Saturday, September 7th, 5–7pm
West Gallery, Richmond Art Center

Special Event: Saturday, October 26th, 12:30–3pm
“Join Nicole Mueller at Fall Family Day for an artist talk, gallery walk-through, and hands-on exploration of collage.”
Art Making: 12:30 to 3pm; Artist Talk: 2pm

Through this exhibition called ‘Thresholds,’ that includes a new body of paintings and site-specific installation, Nicole Mueller will transform the gallery into a shifting environment that addresses the transitional and intangible nature of spaces. Using cut layers of colored films, collage, and paint, Thresholds will activate the natural light and windows of the Richmond Art Center’s West Gallery, combining the effects of stained glass with contemporary abstract painting.

The Richmond Art Center is located at 2540 Barrett Avenue, Richmond, CA 94804 and is open Tuesday – Saturday from 10am – 5pm.

Reception at SFMOMA Artists Gallery Thursday, June 20th by Nicole Mueller

I invite you to join me for a reception at SFMOMA's Artists Gallery in Fort Mason Center in San Francisco on Thursday, June 20th from 5-7pm. I'll have two paintings included within a group exhibit, including the one pictured below. The gallery is located along the waterfront in Building A, within Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture. The exhibit will be on view through the end of the year, and the gallery will be open by appointment only. Here are the details of the reception:

Thursday, June 20th, 2019 from 5-7pm
SFMOMA Artists Gallery

Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture
2 Marina Blvd, Building A
San Francisco, CA 94123


Spring Open Studios Saturday & Sunday, May 4th + 5th by Nicole Mueller

Please join me for the 2019 Spring Open Studios at Hunters Point Shipyard Artists in San Francisco, Saturday May 4th and Sunday May 5th, from 11am–6pm each day. I’ll be opening my studio along with over 120 other artists throughout the shipyard that weekend. This is only the second time I’ve opened my studio since moving into the shipyard exactly one year ago. I’m excited to be a part of this tradition, now in its 30th year, and will have new work available and numerous works in progress to share. The shipyard is located at 451 Galvez Ave., San Francisco, CA 94124 and my studio is in Building 125. Hope to see you there!


Artist Talk at The Oxbow School Tuesday, March 5th by Nicole Mueller


On Tuesday, March 5th, 2019 I’ll be giving an artist talk at The Oxbow School, in Napa, California. It’s free and open to the public, and I’d love it if you could join! I’m honored to be included in The Oxbow School’s roster of visiting artists this spring, which has a longstanding legacy of hosting artists such as Wayne Thiebaud, Deborah Butterfield, Ann Hamilton, among others. The lecture will take place at 7:00pm at the Culinary Institute of America Theater, which is just down the street from the school. More information on the talk and directions can be found on The Oxbow School’s website. Hope you can join us!

San Francisco Fall Open Studios 2018 by Nicole Mueller

Earlier this year, I moved my studio from East Oakland to Hunters Point Shipyard Artist Studios in San Francisco, and opened my studio for the first time in October. San Francisco Open Studios is the largest city-wide open studio event of the year, drawing hundreds of people out every weekend. Hunters Point is one of the largest artist colonies in the country, with over 200 artists working throughout the converted shipyard. I was thrilled to finally participate, and to share my studio, new work, and works in progress with so many new friends and art lovers. Stay tuned for news about the next open studio event in late spring. Here are a few images from Fall Open Studios.


"Overlook in Blue" Mural Video by Nicole Mueller

Last summer, not long after I had moved to San Francisco, I took on my biggest project to date—a 2100 sq. ft. outdoor mural in the industrial neighborhood of Dogpatch. A mix of commercial warehouses and waterfront shipyards, Dogpatch is in the midst of a rapid redevelopment. The mural marked my first time bringing my studio outdoors, and working on a piece of this scale. Bringing in bold blues and yellows to reflect the palette of the neighborhood, the mural existed to bring beauty and color to an area in transition, but the project was short-lived. The building has since been demolished, but today the mural lives on through this incredible video shot by two talented friends and videographers, Mike Gaynor and Justin Carlson.

They did an amazing job capturing the mural's process and the essence of Dogpatch. I'm so excited to share it with you here!

The mural, titled "Overlook in Blue," was entirely self-initiated and self-funded, and made possible with the support of my neighbors within the transient community of Buspatch, local businesses Center Hardware, San Francisco PaintSource, and Cresco Equipment Rental

More photos of the mural can be seen here in an earlier blog post. 

Another thank you to Mike Gaynor and Justin Carlson for their film and video work, and to David Colson for the title sequence and photography.

Mural at Salesforce Transit Center by Nicole Mueller

Recently, I was invited to paint a mural at the new Salesforce Transit Center in San Francisco, as part of the ArtSpan Transit Center Mural Project. The Transit Center is a new hub for transportation, retail, and green space in the heart of downtown San Francisco. Myself, along with 37 other ArtSpan artists, were selected to transform the empty storefront windows throughout the ground floor retail spaces by painting semi-permanent murals. The Transit Center itself includes permanent public art displays by Jenny Holzer and Julie Chang. 

I completed this mural project in only two days, and finished the mural live during the Grand Opening Block Party on Saturday, August 11th, 2018.

I am extremely grateful to have had this opportunity, and to ArtSpan for facilitating the project. The paints and materials for this project were generously donated by Art Savoir-Faire using paints from Sennelier's abstract series.

Photography by Dave Colson

Photography by Dave Colson

If in San Francisco, you can visit the mural in person, located off Minna Street, in between First and Second Streets.

If interested in a possible mural commission, please email

"Light Matter" Exhibit by Nicole Mueller

My recent exhibit Light Matter came down earlier this spring from Davis, California. If you missed seeing the show in person, here is a gallery walkthrough in photos. Light Matter explored ways color and light can be used to create portals and pathways, how painting can help us navigate states of flux, and how galleries can become like sanctuaries.  

This show involved my most ambitious installation to date, and it was such a privilege to take over the Pence Gallery's main gallery space in order to realize it. 

Read more on the show below.


Here are some details of my piece Forming Light, a sculptural installation of blue and yellow acrylic pieces, laser cut and hung from the ceiling. 

For her exhibit Light Matter, Mueller envisions the gallery as a sanctuary with colorful “stained glass” works, including an immersive window installation, collages, and vertical, window-like paintings.  

Mueller activates the glass tower, a prominent architectural feature of the Pence Gallery, with a site-specific installation. She reinterprets the medium of stained glass with materials such as cut dura-lar and acrylic in suspended, organic shapes that reference natural phenomena like storms and hurricanes, or the more benign dappled light that filters through the trees into the gallery on a daily basis. She brings the longstanding tradition of stained glass with its connotations of spiritual or sacred spaces, into the gallery with impermanent materials, re-envisioning the gallery as a sort of chapel. In so doing, the artist compares the role and relationship of galleries to sanctuaries, particularly how a sanctuary can offer a space for reflection and possibility. 

As colored light filters through to cast abstract shapes on the floor and walls, Mueller aims to give physical form to the abstract sensation of light, merge the tangible and intangible, and provide pathways for moving through liminal states that remain in constant flux.

Mueller’s works are both exuberant and complex, with shifting figure-ground relationships, vibrant color, and pockets of deep space creating pathways that weave in and out of compositions both dense and open-ended. Her process-based works are painted, cut, collaged, arranged and rearranged through an additive process of layering, with the resulting works existing in a perpetual state of motion in between chaos and cohesion. 

In this way, she makes manifest our inner desire for work that offers us space for reflection, reminding us of our own presence—and to be present—in the midst of shifting environments, and with a perspective that ultimately, expresses hope.


Light Matter was supported by the Mark M. Glickman and Lanette M. McClure Artist Award, given to emerging artists producing innovative work within California.

For inquiries on available works from the show, please email

Nicole Mueller x BEHR Paint Collaboration by Nicole Mueller

Last month, I created a series of paintings using BEHR's 2018 color palette. Fellow San Francisco creative Chloe Roth teamed up with interior designer Erin Hiemstra (of Apartment34) to redesign her new home, which included a partnership with BEHR paint. As a focal point for her living room, Chloe asked me if I'd be willing to create a painting using BEHR's new color palette. A mix of neutrals and bold accents, I thought it'd be an interesting challenge (I never give myself color restrictions)! And because I always work on multiple paintings at the same time, I turned it into a series.

You can see a glimpse of my painting in Chloe's home below, and a reveal of the other two paintings (they are also available for sale—email me at with inquiries).

The reveal of Chloe's home transformation, and the final painting, can be seen here on Apartment34's blog (also on Domino magazine). Keep an eye out for a full behind-the-scenes studio tour:

photo by Andrea Posadas Creative

photo by Andrea Posadas Creative

photo by Erin Hiemstra 

photo by Erin Hiemstra 


Nocturne Shade (Behr II), 62 x 62 in., BEHR paint on canvas, 2018 


In The Moment (Behr III), 62 x 62 in., BEHR paint on canvas, 2018 

For inquiries on the two paintings shown above, please email

Artist Talk and Walkthrough of "Light Matter" Saturday March 24th by Nicole Mueller

Please join me for an artist talk and walkthrough of my exhibit Light Matter this Saturday, March 24th from 1–3pm at the Pence Gallery! Come hear me talk about the process behind my installation "Forming Light," galleries as sanctuaries, dark matter, "light matter," and how art can help us navigate states of flux. RSVP requested, though the event is free and open to the public! 

Here is a link to more event details on Facebook: