Silicon Valley Open Studios

Connecting artists to art enthusiasts

Artist: Michele Guieu

Cocolithophores Bloom
Title: Cocolithophores Bloom
Description: Salvaged Wood, Lasered
Media: Assemblage/Collage
Size: 15 x 13 x 2
artist thumbnails
artist thumbnails
artist thumbnails

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Contact Michele Guieu



Phone: (858) 736-4849

2019  Showings

May 4 - 5 , Site: 42
540 Ringwood Avenue
Menlo Park, CA 94025


About Michele Guieu

I am an environmental artist, maker, and art educator. I create art installations and present workshops which engage people to reflect on the natural world. My practice focuses on the importance of water, and the consequences of human activity on our watershed and the ocean.

While my training is in graphic design, I was raised in a family of scientists, so my work is inspired by science and by the infinite variety of shapes, colors, and patterns found in nature. I typically use scientific documentation to start a project. Formally I play with scale and representation to create the simplified shapes and elements I use in my installations. Materially I use recyclable, recycled, or sustainable materials whenever possible. My tool of choice is the laser cutter machine. It allows me to iterate, and explore, and offers a large array of possibilities.

A challenge of teaching people about global issues such as water, climate change, and sea level rise is that they are often so abstract for individuals to grasp and understand. Because global issues are community issues, I believe they are best taught at the level of communities, in the form of community activities.

Participatory art installations integrating elements of science empower people through creative expression and hands-on experiences. As people in the public participate, create and play, they learn about sensitive environmental issues that are part of our region’s present and near future.

I created several participatory installations about plankton, making visible these stunningly beautiful and essential marine species. The last version of it contained plastic trash collected along the bay area.
?Originally from Marseille, France, I lived in Senegal, Africa, and Paris, where I received a MA in graphic design from the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs de Paris (ENSAD). I was an artistic director, a creative director at Landor and an independent graphic designer for many years in Paris. I moved to the US in 2000.

My work has been shown in exhibitions at venues such as the City College Gallery (San Diego, CA), de Saisset Museum of Art and History (Santa Clara, CA), the Museum of Art and History in Santa Cruz (MAH Santa Cruz, CA), the California Center for the Arts (Escondido, CA), Mac Paris (France), The San Diego Art Institute (San Diego, CA).

‘Granted’ won best environmental short at the Bay Area Women in Film and Media (BAWIFM) Short Film Festival in San Francisco in 2013.
‘Coastal Cleanup’, an installation made of the trash collected around the San Francisco Bay in Sunnyvale where I live, is actually on view at the Santa Clara Valley Water Headquarters in San Jose, CA.
I serve on the Education Committee at Montalvo Arts Center, and on the Art Committee at Alliance for Youth Achievement (AYA) in San Jose.