Ash Arder

Detroit, Michigan

Artworks shown are selected from works submitted by the artist in their grant or residency application. All works are copyright of the artist or artist’s estate.

About Ash Arder

On a sunny day with blue skies, Ash Arder faces the camera as she leans on her arm behind her. A Black woman with medium skin tone, her chin length hair is dark and curly, and she wears silver framed sunglasses, silver rings and bracelet, and a white T-shirt that reads “Power to the People” in a child’s handwriting.
Photo by My Proulx

Ash Arder (b. 1988, Flint, MI) is a transdisciplinary artist, organizer, and educator who has spent the last decade transforming DIY, hacker, and experimental approaches to problem solving into formalized programs, projects, and collaborations. Her work and research use storytelling and speculative collaboration as frameworks to explore climate and social justice themes. Manipulating physical and virtual environments, her work uses mark making, mechanical portraiture, performance, and sound design as tools for complicating dynamics of power between humans, machines, and the lands they occupy. Since graduating from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2018, Arder has received various awards and artist residencies including the Knight Arts Challenge (2021), Bemis Center for Contemporary Art residency (2021), Recess residency (2019), and A Studio In The Woods residency (2018). Her upcoming solo exhibition at the Cranbrook Art Museum (opening October 2023) explores the relationship between human workers and large machinery through a lens of intimacy, tenderness, and connection. Like her award-winning mobile sound sculpture, Whoop House, works in the Cranbrook exhibition will run on solar power.

Program Participation

Joan Mitchell Fellowship, 2023

Website / Social Links

At the very core, my creative practice is concerned with the idea of relation. Relation is, for me, a basic tenet for understanding how collaboration between ideas and entities might occur. I use the idea of speculative collaboration as a framework to expose, deconstruct or reconfigure physical and conceptual systems, especially those relating to ecology and industry. I understand collaboration to be a form of intimacy.”