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My work seeks better relationships with the living world—more-than-human agents that support our ability to live. 

Light being electromagnetic, I'm interested in the mineral material conditions of the screen, which I investigate through the intimacy of making neon from scrap glass; I aim to communicate an embodied stake through a choreography of breath, motion, and thwarted desire lines of current to attain lucent vividity.—What are ways art can metabolize the screen?


To reevaluate what and what land we consider waste hinges on making legible the connection between the colonial foreclosure of mining, encapsulated in the screen, and livable futurity inoculated by decomposer habitats. So, Make soil, a living chimera, out of the runoff of the photic world. 


My practice aims to evolve a mutual understanding, that microbial and organism diversity is key to the health of ecosystems including humans, that landfills are not a life sentence, and soil respiration makes land livable.

But these efforts to implicate people in webs of relation become empty exercise, if we neglect to confront the massive disparities in class that give rise to the exploitative and extractive practices fundamental to capitalism. What will we socially decide about the existence of a billionaire class positioned to threaten collective survival for their short term gain?


Kelly Xi is an artist, writer, and designer who critically leverages the tools of machine learning, game engines, digital ceramics, and neon to embed audiences in material-relational visions for livable futures. Her work engages intimately with the emissive materiality of digitization. Her research interests wade the petro-porous condition we share with extrahuman life and culture an embodied stake in mutual survival via the gut, "waste", and wavelength.


Kelly Xi is a transplant of Baotou, Inner Mongolia, the world’s largest supplier of rare earth metals powering illuminant technologies, screens, mobile devices, turbines, and electric engines. Her hometown is the site of the Baogang Tailings Dam, a radioactive cesspool visible from space, operated by the Bayan Obo mine. In 2021, her biodesign work on the mycelial biopolymer PermaPak won the Barilla Prize for Regenerative Living Ecosystems and was published in Issues of Science and Technology.

image deck


School of the Art Institute of Chicago | 2023
MFA Art & Technology


Who I've collaborated with:, Paradice Palase, REUNION, Raw Haus, JunxionNYC, XOXA NYC, Lightning Society, Pixellated, NYC Bass Collective, Caden NYC, Fang the Great

Venues: SPRING/BREAK Art Show, Secret Project Robot, Google HQ, NY VR, Paper Factory Hotel, House of Yes, Rosegold, The New Work Project, Projective Space, The Keep, Superchief Gallery, Terra Firma, Tender Trap; Paris: Le Hasard Ludique

Installation Artist / Media Designer / 3D Animator | Brooklyn, NY | Dec 2016 - present

Neon Tech | SAIC Art & Technology Department | May 2022 - present

Knowledge Lab Graduate Assistant | SAIC Department of Sculpture | June 2021 - present

Graduate Teaching Assistant |Computer Vision & Machine Learning | Neon Techniques | Brave New Bodies | SAIC departments of Art & Technology and Contemporary Practices | Sept 2020 - present

Graduate Gallery Installer | SAIC Galleries | Sept 2020 - Jan 2021

Live Compositor | ART404 | New York, NY | Oct 2017 - Jan 2019

VR artist collective member and resident expert in VDMX, TouchDesigner and live performance visuals with programmed audioreactivity, e.g. performances at Google VR Creativity and at NY VR. Helped develop VR livestream workflows synthesizing OBS streaming with VDMX compositing and capturing realtime Tiltbrush feedback and 360° video. 3D motion graphics sequence animation for VR film "Hiraeth."

Junior Stylist | FOOD NETWORK | BSTV Entertainment | New York, NY | Oct 2018 - present

Fabrication, graphic design, research + prop sourcing, facilitation for recipe development, demonstration, & culinary craft styling set assets on Food Network's The Kitchen. Highly organized and resourceful, flexible problem-solver with uncompromising work ethic. Backend software accountant for Art Department.

Curatorial Associate + Fabrication Assistant | THE UNTITLED SPACE | New York, NY | Sept 2017 - Nov 2018

Worked closely with the Director on exhibition production, fabrication, installation, marketing materials, research, cataloguing, PR, artist communications, and arthandling. Coordinator and set design for two SPRING/BREAK art fair booths, as well as Special Projects floor sales. InDesign production of sales &and marketing materials. Wordpress site + Artsy platform maintenance. Event production coordinator. 

Bartender | BUEN PROVECHO | Isabel Segunda, Vieques, PR | Nov-Jan 2016

| PARADA: NEW PERU | Walnut Creek, CA | Jun-Sept 2015

| THAI THAI BISTRO | Schenectady, NY | Jan 2014-Jun 2015

Concierge | EL BLOK HOTEL | Esperanza, Vieques, PR | Nov-Jan 2016

Overnight Shrimp Packer | MOLOKAI BROODSTOCK CO. | Molokai, HI | Dec 2014-Mar 2015

Public Health Intern | Tulare County Health & Human Services | Visalia, CA | Summer 2012

select exhibitions.



'Casseiopeia's Perspective' | SAIC Galleries | Chicago, IL Oct 2021
'alien_criticality'  machinima with sound

Interspecies ISSUE 08 | Biodesigned Magazine |  July 2021
'alien_criticality'  machinima with sound

'My Dreams These Days' | SAIC + Livestream | Chicago, IL  & Virtual June 2021
'Tactile Exile'  networked installation with sound


'ExFest 2020' | New Art.City | Chicago, IL Sept 2020
'Touchless Voyeur'  single-channel animation with sound

'Reality used to be a friend of mine' | Selenas Mountain | Ridgewood, Queens July 2020
'Touchless Voyeur'  single-channel animation with sound


'moldable, injectable, extrudable, vacuumable' | Dinner.Tn | LIC, Queens May 2019

'Fleeting Antidote'  epigenetic odyssey of transnational and transgenerational residue, pantomiming biological case study as installation.



curator and artist exhibiting 'Cognitive Dissonance' experiential installation

MIND GLITCH | 457 Broome | NEW YORK, NY | Aug 2018
'' experiential installation 

'SMOMID' audio-interactive live visuals, collaboration w/ Nick Demopoulos


RAW HAUS 'Brooklyn Creative' | The New Work Project | BROOKLYN, NY | Sept 2017
'Seamless Integration' projection-installation 

GAME FACE | Ugly Duck Gallery | LONDON | Jul 2017
'esc Room' immersive installation

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