Rachele Riley is a multidisciplinary artist and graphic designer based in Durham, NC. Her self-directed work investigates the visual representation of conflict, contested space, systems of war and data, and materiality—and their anaethestic reconciliation within culture. She writes and incorporates original research into her experimental print, drawing, video, maps, archives, publication, and data-driven, code- and web-based works.

Rachele has presented, published, and exhibited in national and international settings—recently at the Horace Williams House in Chapel Hill (2021); at Pratt Manhattan Gallery in New York (2019); the Baltic Centre in Gateshead, UK (2013); and at SIGGRAPH in Vancouver, Canada (2014), among other venues. Her multi-faceted project, The Evolution of Silence, which launched in 2013, explores the impact of forty-one years of post-WWII nuclear testing at the Nevada Test Site, and has been honored by The Webby Awards (2014) and by AIGA Philadelphia Design Awards (2017). Her design work received an Award of Excellence from Communication Arts Magazine (Typography Annual) (2018), is recognized in Print Magazine’s Design Regional (2008), and is featured in the book, Motion Design (2004). She collaborates with Daniel McCafferty and Joshua Singer on the Different Data project—that explores stories around cities, change, and water. She is a contributor to the collective design research of DesignInquiry (DI), where she served on the Board of Directors from 2013–2015. Rachele works as graphic designer on a freelance-commission basis, and previously for the Smithsonian Institution Folklife Festival (The Silk Road, 2002), National Public Radio, the National Park Service, VCU School of the Arts. She is currently Assistant Professor/Head of New Media and Design at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Rachele holds a BS in Studio Art from New York University (NYU), a Vordiplom in Communication Design from the Burg Giebichenstein Kunsthochschule Halle in Germany, and a MFA in Design/Visual Communication from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). Born and raised in Washington, D.C., she has lived and worked in different cities across the United States; onsite in remote natural environments (with the National Park Service); abroad for four years in Germany; and has taught graphic design in a range of art school/university programs. She lives on the edge of the woods in Durham, NC, with her boyfriend and her son, and their cats.

>>Artist Statement



MFA—Design/Visual Communication, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA / 2005
VCU Graduate Teaching Assistantship / 2004
VCU Graduate Studies Fellowship / 2003–2004

Vordiplom—Communication Design, Burg Giebichenstein Kunsthochschule Halle, Germany / 2001
BS—Studio Art, New York University, New York, NY / 1994


Award of Excellence, Typography Annual, Communication Arts / 2018
AIGA Philadelphia Design Award, Philadelphia, PA / 2017
Official Honoree in NetArt, The Webby Awards / 2014
Print Magazine Design Regional Issue / 2008
Outstanding MFA Student in Design Award / 2005
Travel Award to Doha, Qatar, VCU / 2005

+ Research GRANTS

Dean’s Creative Research Award, University of North Carolina Greensboro / S 2021 / 2020 / F 2019 / F 2018
Faculty Research Grant, UNCG / 2020
Faculty First Research Grant, UNCG / 2019
Work Study Scholarship, Penland School of Craft / 2016
Creative Research Award, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign / 2015
Faculty Academic Development Fund, The University of the Arts / 2014
Faculty Research Semester Course Release, UArts /2012
Faculty Enrichment Grant, UArts / 2011
Hatchfund Open Match Fund / 2013
The DigitalGlobe Foundation Imagery Grant / 2012
Center for Humanities, Technology and Science, University of North Carolina Charlotte / 2008
Faculty Research Grant, UNCC / 2008
College of Arts and Sciences Small Grant, UNCC / 2007
Travel Grant to Berlin, Germany, VCU / 2004


InLight 2021, 1708 Gallery/Great Shiplock Park, Richmond, VA / 2021
Marking/Time, (two-person, with Susan Finer) Horace Williams House, Chapel Hill, NC / 2021
Acid Rain, Attic 506, Chapel Hill, NC, November 8, 2019
DesignInquiry: Futurespective, Institute of Contemporary Art, MECA, Portland, ME, October 4–December 14, 2019.
Another Potato Chip Weekend, Gallery Oneoneone Annex, Carrboro, NC, September 13–October 12, 2019.
Ambiguous Territory [traveling], Handwerker Gallery, Ithaca, NY. August– December, 2019.
Black Hole/Atomic City, Sanitary Tortilla Factory, Albuquerque, NM, August 2– 30, 2019.
Ambiguous Territory [traveling], Pratt Manhattan Gallery, NY. December 2018–February 2019.
Digital Disobedience, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, December 2018.
Ambiguous Territory [traveling], University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA. Fall 2018.
Ambiguous Territory: Architecture, Landscape, and the Postnatural. [traveling], University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI / 2017
AIGA Philadelphia Design Awards Exhibition, Philadelphia, PA / 2016
Weeks Gallery, Artifact and Process, Jamestown, NY. Curated by Jason Dilworth / 2016
NORDES 2015: Design Ecologies, Stockholm, Sweden (with Joshua Singer and Daniel McCafferty) / 2015
Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, Detroit, MI (with Joshua Singer, Daniel McCafferty, and Patricio Davila) / 2014
SIGGRAPH 2014, Art Gallery, Acting in Translation, Vancouver, Canada. Curated by Basak Senova / 2014
Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Praxis and Poetics, Gateshead, UK / 2013
PECO Crown Lights, Art in the Air, Philadelphia, PA / 2010
Space 301, Art in Academia, Mobile, AL / 2009
1708 Gallery, Media X, Richmond, VA / 2008
Athens Institute for Contemporary Art, Overload Virtual Art Collection, Athens, GA / 2008
Foundry Art Centre, Paperwork In, On, and Of Paper IV, 
St. Charles, MO / 2008
Gallery 400, Pathogeographies: Or Other People’s Baggage, Univ of Illinois, Chicago, IL / link 2007
Balfour Books,Titles: An Exhibition of Artists’ Book Works, Toronto, Canada / 2007
Fine Arts Gallery, The Drawing Room, VCU, Richmond, VA / 2007
Gallery, Dispersal Tactics: Artspace Drawing Invitational, Richmond, VA / 2006
WPA / Corcoran, Antithesis: Experimental Media Series, Washington, D.C. / 2006
Salto A1 Television, The One Minutes Festival, Amsterdam, The Netherlands / 2006
Backloft at La Cathedral, A Wander Beyond, Dublin, 
Ireland / 2006
Anderson Gallery, MFA Thesis Exhibition: Visualizing the Art of War, VCU, Richmond, VA / 2005
Flat International, The Last Diversion, Richmond, VA / 2004
6th American Print Biennial, University of Richmond Museum, Richmond, VA, Mar 17–June 26 / 2004


Ambiguous Territory exhibition catalog, Actar Publishing / expected Fall 2020.
AIGA Frontier conference catalog (‘Illegitimate Worlds’ included), AIGA / 2019.
Displacements: an x’scape journal. Reality/Fiction, Vol.2, pages 50–54 (‘The Evolution of Silence — Mapping and Representation’), Displacements and GIPC Cultural Landscape Research Group, Madrid, Spain / 2018.
Design Cities: Berlin, DesignInquiry publisher / 2016
Reflections on Research through Design: The Evolution of Silence, Studies in Material Thinking: Visual/Textual, Vol 13 / 2015
Cumulus: The Virtuous Circle, conference proceedings, with Joshua Singer / 2015
Leonardo, Journal of Arts, Sciences and Technology, Special Issue: SIGGRAPH 2014, Volume 47, Number 4, 2014 / 2014
Praxis and Poetics: Research Through Design, conference proceedings / 2013
Make/Do, DesignInquiry publisher / 2013
White Space in Design, Sandra Wheeler, Angela Patchell Books / 2009
100’s Visual logos & Letterheads, Matt Woolman, Angela
 Patchell Books, p.26 / 2008
Print Magazine Regional Design Annual 2008 / 2008
Sic of Tyranny: an Interview with Virginia’s Good Girl, 
Virtus, Daily Constitutional (Delusions of Grandeur), Issue 5 / 2007
Motion Design, Matt Woolman, Rotovision, p.88–89 / 2004

+ PRESENTATIONS + lectures + workshops

Southeastern College Art Conference, virtual / 2020
AIGA Design Educators Conference, Frontier, Bozeman, MT / 2016
VCU, Department of Graphic Design, Richmond, VA (with Joshua Singer and Daniel McCafferty) / 2016
SUNY Fredonia, Fredonia, NY / 2016
Weeks Gallery, Gallery talk ‘Artifact and Process,’ Jamestown, NY / 2016
College Art Association Conference, Design Colloquium, Washington, D.C. / 2016
Mapping Ephemeralities, Art & Cartography, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil / 2015
DesignInquiry NO QUO, Vinalhaven, ME / 2015
EuDesignRadio, Live interview at Cumulus, Milan, Italy (with Joshua Singer) / 2015
Cumulus: The Virtuous Circle, Milan, Italy (with Joshua Singer) / 2015
GIS Day—Discovering the World through GIS, Champaign, IL /2014
Re: the City, Humanities Center Symposium,
 Wayne State University, Detroit, MI / 2014
Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI / 2014
SIGGRAPH 2014 Art Gallery Talks, Vancouver, Canada / 2014
New Paradigms in Teaching and Learning, AICAD Symposium, Baltimore, MD / 2013
Moore College of Art and Design, Philadelphia, PA / 2013
Praxis and Poetics: Research Through Design, 
Baltic Center for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, UK / 2013
DesignInquiry Station, Vinalhaven, ME / 2013
Remaking Research, AICAD Symposium, Vancouver, Canada / 2012
DesignInquiry/Design City: Berlin, Berlin, Germany / 2012
Texas State University San Marcos, San Marcos, TX / 2012
DesignInquiry: Make/Do, Vinalhaven, ME / 2011
College Art Association Conference, Chicago, IL / 2010
College Art Association Conference | ARTspace, Los Angeles, CA / 2009
Southeastern College Art Conference, New Orleans, LA (with Stephanie Hutin) / 2008
Southeastern College Art Conference, Charleston, WV / 2007
Southeastern College Art Conference, Nashville, TN / 2006

+ continued learning

Pattern and Animation with Python & Drawbot (with Maurice Meilleur), Typographics, June 4 and 11 / 2021
Animating with Risographs (with Kelli Anderson), May / 2021
Artist-centred Platform (with Craig Fahner), April 29 / 2021
Python for Visual Designers (with David Jonathan Ross), Type at Cooper, March 2–30 / 2021
Creative Writing with Computation (with Allison Parrish), Anderson Ranch Arts Center, Jan 11–22 / 2021
Coding for Artists P5.js (with Ari Melenciano), Anderson Ranch Arts Center, Jan 11–13 / 2021
Blow-Up: Exploration and Discovery, with Casey Reas, Anderson Ranch Arts Center, Snowmass Village, CO, July 14–22, 2019
Animating Video with Code: Generative Cinema, with Casey Reas, Anderson Ranch Arts Center, Snowmass Village, CO, July 1–7, 2018.
Penland School of Crafts, Workshop with Marianne Dages ‘Text as Image, Type as Thought,’ Penland, NC / 2016


DesignInquiry NoQuo, Vinalhaven, ME / 2015
DEPE Space, as part of DesignInquiry, Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, Detroit, MI / 2014
DesignInquiry DesignCity: Detroit, Ponyride, Detroit, MI / 2014
DesignInquiry DesignCity: Berlin, Berlin, Germany / 2012
DesignInquiry Station, Vinalhaven, ME / 2013
DesignInquiry Make/Do, Vinalhaven, ME / 2011
Virginia Center for Creative Arts, Amherst, VA / 2007
KHN Center for the Arts, Nebraska City, NE / 2006

+ community

Board of Directors member, DesignInquiry / 2013–2015

+ Press

Design Inquiry: Futurespective
Ambiguous Territory
‘Visual Communication: Rachele Riley’s New Mappings of History, Space, and Place,’ interview by Ali McGhee, Holler, July 23, 2018.
‘Different Data Detroit (+ Stockholm)’ (with Joshua Singer) and ‘The Evolution of Silence,’ live interview on EU Design Radio, Milan, Italy. June 5, 2015.

+ work experience

Freelance design, Tungsten Branding / 2020–present
LEA, logotype / 2020
Mauer Broadcast program design, Sheryl Oring / 2019.
Thisness booklet design, Barbara Campbell Thomas; Greensboro, NC / 2019.
Holler, logotype / 2017
Kid Owned and Operated Play (KOOP), logotype and identity system / 2015
DesignInquiry website with Emily Luce and programmer, Dan Warner / 2014
Art Director/Co-Coordinator Design exhibition, Active Territory, UArts / 2011
Design Does exhibition catalog, UArts, College of Media Arts and Communication / 2011
Spring 2009 music and theater poster, UNCC College of Arts and Architecture / 2009
Ron Johnson, bilingual (French/English) artist book / 2009
Stephen Vitiello Four Sounds exhibition, record label design / 2008
Ann Agee: Boxing in the Kitchen, exhibition pamphlet, VCUarts Department of Sculpture + Extended Media / 2007
2007 MFA Thesis exhibition catalog, VCUarts Graduate Artists Association / 2007
2006 MFA Thesis exhibition catalog, VCUarts Graduate Artists Association / 2006
Gerald Donato: Reinventing the Game exhibition catalog, Anderson Gallery / 2006
Advertisements published in d’art and Artforum, VCUarts Graduate Studies / 2006
Advertisement published in American Craft Magazine, VCUarts Department of Craft/Material Studies / 2006
Advertisement for Solvent Space, published in Artforum magazine, VCUarts Department of Painting and Printmaking / 2006
Posters, Print, Web site design (programming by Patrick Power), VCUarts Department of Kinetic Imaging / 2006
Graphic designer at National Public Radio (NPR) / 2003
Graphic designer for the 2002 Smithsonian Folklife Festival: The Silk Road, Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, Smithsonian Institution / 2002
Graphic Designer for Department of Mineralogy, Martin Luther University, Halle, Germany / 2001
Graphic Designer for Northern Virginia Graphics, Fairfax, VA / 2000
Graphic Design Intern, Harpers Ferry Interpretive Design Center, Harpers Ferry, WV, wayside exhibition panels and maps / 1999
Graphic Design Intern, Hallesche Advertising Agency, Halle, Germany / 1998
Graphic Designer, Artist, Ranger for National Park Service, Redwood National Park, CA; Guadalupe Mountains National Park, TX; and Sunset Crater/Wupatki National Monuments, AZ / 1996/7


Assistant Professor of Graphic Design:
University of North Carolina Greensboro, Greensboro, NC / 2017–present
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Champaign, IL / 2014–2017
The University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA
 / 2009–2014
University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Charlotte, NC / 2007–2009
Administrative Director & Assistant Professor:
Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA / 2005–2007
Instructor of Record:
Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA / 2004–2005

+ skills

Processing, p5.js, Python, Jupyter Notebook, Drawbot
HTML, CSS, Glitch, WordPress
Adobe Creative Suite (Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, AfterEffects, Premiere, Media Encoder, Acrobat)
Zoom, Slack, Microsoft Office, Keynote, Google Workspace
Design Research Methods

+ languages

English (native) / German / French

 + Links