1995 Master of Fine Arts, Newcomb Art, Tulane University (Full Scholarship)
1991 LaCoste School of Art, Cleveland Art Institute, LaCoste, France, (Paid Internship)
1990 Bachelor of Arts-Loyola University, New Orleans (Partial Scholarship)
1989 University of Georgia Studies Abroad Program, Cortona, Italy (Scholarship)

 Solo Exhibitions


Solastalgia, Good Children Gallery, New Orleans, LA


These Last Days of Now, Good Children Gallery, New Orleans, LA


King Tides, Good Children Gallery, New Orleans, LA

Just Below the Surface, Art House, Covington, LA


Below Sea Level, A Gallery for Fine Photography, New Orleans, LA


Fluid States, Octavia Gallery, New Orleans, LA


Shifting, Pingyao International Photography Festival, Pingyao, China
1452 Country Farm Road, Antenna Gallery, New Orleans, LA


Shifting, The Ogden Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans, LA
Shifting, Bayou Terrebonne Waterlife Museum, Houma, LA
Fragile Land, Arts Council of New Orleans Gallery, New Orleans, LA


Shifting, Acadiana Center for the Arts, Lafayette, LA
Water, Longue Vue Gardens Gallery, New Orleans LA


Shifting, Heriard-Cimino Gallery, New Orleans, LA
Fragile Land, Isaac Delgado Fine Art Gallery, New Orleans, LA


Fragile Land, Heriard-Cimino Gallery, New Orleans, LA


Ruminations, Southeastern Contemporary Gallery, Hammond, LA
Ruminations, Sylvia Schmidt Gallery, New Orleans, LA

Group Exhibitions


13, GC Prospect.5 Show, GoodChildren Gallery, New Orleans, LA


GC Gallery member Exhibition, Good Children Gallery, New Orleans, LA


Supernova, Luna Fete light show, New Orleans, LA


Cultivate, Lupin Gallery, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, New Orleans, LA
Battlegrounds: Wild Mesechabe
, curated by Nancy Baker Cahill, Hibernia Tower, and Mississippi River, New Orleans, LA
Roots in the Water, Jean Lafitte National Park and The Philippine Louisiana Historical Society, Lafitte,LA


Constructing the Break; curator Allison Glenn, Contemporary Art Center of New Orleans, New Orleans, LA
No Man’s Land, 3 person exhibition, curated by Dan Tague, Isaac Delgado Fine Art Gallery, New Orleans, LA

Hive Mind, Diboll Gallery, Loyola University, New Orleans, LA
10 Years, The Front Gallery, St. Claude Avenue, New Orleans, LA


Prospect.4 Triennial, featured artist, New Orleans, LA
The Earth is Flat, Antenna Gallery, New Orleans, LA
Inquest, (Fluid States), New Orleans Art Center, New Orleans, LA


Louisiana Photography Biennial, juror Don Marshall, New Orleans Art Center, NOLA
Schneider Gallery Showcase selection of artwork from our artists, Schneider Gallery, Chicago, Illinois
La Femme, New Orleans Art Center, curated by Don Marshall, New Orleans, Louisiana
Faculty Exhibition, Kirshman Gallery, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, NOLA
Greetings From, 5 Press Gallery, New Orleans, Louisiana
Life lines-Indigena, Fragile Lands Installation, Healing Arts Center, NOLA


Water, Water Everywhere, Paeon to a Vanishing Resource, traveling exhibition and film festival, curated by Jennifer Heath University of  Connecticut- Avery Point,Huntington, West.Virginia Art Museum
Differenze sull’identita, curated by Dr. Efthalia Rentetzi, San Lorenzo Hall, Venice, Italy

Take me to the River, Octavia Gallery, New Orleans, Louisiana
Landscapes Exhibition, CANO, curated by Jeanne Nathan, Poydras Louisiana
ArtiFiction, Studio Inferno Gallery, St. Claude, New Orleans, Louisiana


Alluvial Constructs, curated by Laura Sandoval, Octavia Gallery, New Orleans, Louisiana
Crevasse 22, curated by Jeanne Nathan, Poydras Louisiana,
Imago Mundi New Orleans Project, New Orleans Museum of Art
Water Works, curated by Christopher Saucedo, Proteus Gowanus, Brooklyn, NY
New Orleans in Photographs, curated by Frank Relle and Catie Sampson, Multi-Media Museum in Moscow, Russia
A Story of Water, Good Children Gallery, New Orleans, Louisiana 


Invented Reality, A Gallery for Fine Photography, New Orleans, Louisiana
The Dreams of Dolls and Other Realities, Reinsburghallen, Stuttgart, Germany
Home, Octavia Gallery, New Orleans, Louisiana
Northeast-Midwest Institute’s Mississippi River Photography Exhibition, Capital Hill, Washington, D.C., National MS River Museum and Acquarium, Fort Madison Area Arts Association, National Great Rivers Research and Education Center, St. Louis Regional Arts Commission, Osceola Center for the Arts and Heritage, Cotton Museum, Lower MS River Museum, Arts Council of New Orleans
Her Infinite Variety, Barristers Gallery, St. Claude Avenue, New Orleans, Louisiana
Photography and Environmental Concern, The Photo Place Gallery, Middlebury, Vermont


Mentors Centennial Exhibit, Diboll Gallery Loyola University, New Orleans, Louisiana
Contemporary Antiques, curated by Frank Relle, Octavia Gallery, New Orleans, Louisiana
Water, Water Everywhere, Paean to a Vanishing Resource, curated by Jennifer Heath, Boedecker Theatre and Naropa University in Boulder,
Colorado, El Paso Museum of Art, 
Francis McCray Gallery of Contemporary Art, Department of Expressive Arts, Western New Mexico

University:Electro Gila, the Power of Water, Rio Grande, Gila, Mimbres Rivers-Vecinos Exhibition, the Alexey von Schlippe Gallery at
the University of Connecticut-Avery Point, the Huntington Museum of Art, Huntington, West Virginia, Wignall Museum of
Contemporary Art at Chaffey College in Rancho Cucamunga, CA


The two or three things I know about her, Prospect 2 Biennial visitor center, curated by Dan Cameron New Orleans, Louisiana
New Media Exhibition, LACDA (Los Angeles Center for Digital Art), curated by Peter Frank, Los Angeles California
What the modern era has gained in civility, Gallery 1646, curated by Joris Lindhout and Maaike Gouwenberg, Den Hague, Netherlands
Catalyst, Space 301, curated by Robin Wallis Atkinson, Mobile Alabama.
The Machine in the Garden, Prospect 1.5, curated by Dan Cameron, NOLA


Louisiana Trees, Sibley Gallery, New Orleans, Louisiana
Hope in the Blasted Landscape, The Iron Works, New Orleans, Louisiana
The Bento Box, Isaac Delgado Gallery, New Orleans, Louisiana
The Gulf, New Orleans Photo Alliance Gallery, New Orleans, Louisiana
Shoot’n Southern, Women Photographers Past and Present, Mobile Museum of Art, curated by Donan Klooz, Mobile, Alabama
Transitive Geographies: Contemporary Visions of an Evolving South, curated by Shannon Morris, Georgia College and State University’s
Museum, Milledgeville, GA, Bryan Art Gallery


Vestiges Projects, Buckhead Library, curated by Jan Gilbert, Atlanta, Georgia
LANDMARKS, The Opal Gallery, curated by Constance Lewis, Atlanta, Georgia
Southern Open, Acadiana Center for the Arts, juror Eleanor Heartney, Lafayette, Louisiana
Muses, Heriard-Cimino Gallery, New Orleans, Louisiana


Environs/Examined, Louisiana Artworks, juror Rose Courville, New Orleans,Louisiana
Sanctuary, SohoPhoto Gallery, curated by Victoria Ryan, New York, New York
Odd Works, The New Orleans Photo Alliance, Juror David Rubin, New Orleans, Louisiana
Loss. Ritual. Relic. Residue:The Archive, Newcomb College, curated by Jan Gilbert, New Orleans, Louisiana


2017 Prospect.4, Lafitte Greenway installation of “Turning, prayer wheels for the Mississippi River, New Orleans, LA November

2016 Luna Fete installation of sculpture “Turning,” commissioned by the Arts Council of New Orleans, December

2014 “Interstitial” CANO and Torres Trust, Poydras, Louisiana

2013 “Passages” site specific installation commissioned by the Brechtel Corporation, Fulton alley via the Arts Council of New Orleans

2013 “Currents” video designed for live concert with Faubourg Quartet in honor of John Scott

2011 “The Bayou runs through our veins” Bayou Grace Community Services, documentary

2009 “Fragile Land Rotunda” large scale site specific work commissioned by the ArtsCouncil of New Orleans on behalf of the Joan Mitchell Foundation

2002 The American Can Company Series, commissioned by Historic Restoration LLC

2001 The Cotton Mill Series commissioned by Historic Restoration LLC,


2014 Rauschenberg Artist residency, Captiva, Florida (invitation)

2017 Rauschenberg Artist residency, Captiva, Florida (remote residency due to Hurricane Irma)


1997-Present New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, part time artist mentor

Books and Exhibition Catalogues

The Sea Bed, Michel Varisco and Rodger Kamenetz, Dipinto Press, 2020 

Altars and Invitations, The Neighborhood Story Project, Rachel Breunlin, UNO Press, 2019

The Will and The Way, The enduring Spirit of New Orleans, Donning Company Publishers, Mayor Mitch Landrieu; 2018

Prospect.4, The Lotus in Spite of the Swamp, DEl Monico Books and Prestel Publishers, Trevor Schoonmaker; 2017

Lightening Storm Mind, Autonomedia Press, May, 2017 written by Max Cafard, photographs by Michel Varisco

If Those Bricks Could Talk, published by UNO Press, written by Rachel Breunlin 2015

Water, Water, Everywhere, Paean to a Vanishing Resource, Baksun Books, Jennifer Heath and Ismail Serageldin; 2014

Reparation- Contemporary Artists from New Orleans, Imago Mundi Luciano Benetton, Collection, Fabrica 2014

Inventing Reality, New Orleans Visionary Photography, Luna Press, October 2013

17th Annual Louisiana Fine Art Showcase, Southeastern Louisiana Contemporary Art, Gallery, 2013

Hotel Ortolon,Tom Whalen text, Michel Varisco Photography, Black Scat Books, 2013

Photography and the Environment, Photoplace Exhibition Catalogue, 2013

Shifting, by Michel Varisco with contributing essays by Anne Gisleson and Bradley Sumrall, A&I books, Ogden Museum of Southern Art, June of 2012

To live in the South One has to be a Scar Lover, Gallery 1646 Den Haag, August, 2011

Ed Skoog’s: Mister Skylight, Copper Canyon Press, November of 2009, cover

Sustained Winds Exhibition Catalogue– the Acadiana Center for the Arts 2006

Intersection|New Orleans,“Jeff Davis and Earhart, The Mayonnaise Triangle,” Jill Marquis,2006, Press St, New Orleans, LA, p.15

Habitations, Portels Press, Brad Richard 1st edition, Nov 2000, cover

Public and Corporate Collections

Newcomb Art Museum 

The Ogden Museum of Southern Art

National Library of Paris

The SURDNA Foundation

State of Louisiana-percent for art collection

City of New Orleans percent for art collection

Historic Restorations Inc.

Loyola University of New Orleans

Southeastern University of Louisiana

Louisiana State University

River Museum-Torres-Burns Trust

Gulf Coast Bank, New Orleans

The City of New Orleans

The United States Embassy, Moscow

Luciano Benetton Collection, Italy


2017 Prospect 4 Artist, The Lotus in Spite of the Swamp

2017 Rauschenberg Artist Alumna Project Residency (cancelled due to Hurricane Irma)

2015 The Water Challenge Design Contest winner

2015 LDOA Artist Career Advancement Grant

2014 Rauschenberg Artist Residency

2014 Honoree, Love in the Garden, New Orleans Museum of Art

2012 Grant via The Bayou Terrebonne Waterlife Museum administered by the Houma Regional Arts Council from the Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism in cooperation with the Louisiana State Arts Council and the Louisiana Division of the Arts and the Office of Cultural Development

2010 SURDNA Grant

Publishing Initiative Grant awarded by the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities

Fellowship Award from Louisiana Division of the Arts

Cultural Economy Foundation Grant

2007 SURDNA Foundation Grant

2003 SURDNA Foundation Fellowship


Village Canoe Artist Residency and Art Project, Advisory Board, Juror

Just Below The Surface”, The Art House, Covington, LA 

The New Orleans Photo Alliance, former Vice President, Board Member and Founder

Studio in the Woods, artist advisor

Public Presentations/Talks/Podcasts

2022  Angela Gregory, Letters Read podcast, host Nancy Collins, September 12th, 2022
           Lady Louisiana Artist Michel Varisco, Letters Read, host Nancy Collins, June 24th, 2022

2020  “The art of engaging social and environmental subjects” Guest Artist of Anna Mecugni for University of New Orleans 

          “Civic Arts Fellowship talk” -with Adam Roberti and Jackie Sumell organized by Sara Woodward on behalf of the Gentilly 

2019  South Louisiana Landscape: Art of Racial and Environmental Justice, Ace Hotel, New Orleans, LA 

“Just Below the Surface” The Art House, Covington, LA

          “Artist Studio Talk and Walk through, Mississippi State University, at artist’s studio New Orleans, LA

2018 “No Man’s Land Talk, Isaac Delgado College

          “Symbolic Luminaries” Prospect.4 Workshop at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans, LA

2017 “An Artist’s Journey Through Endangered Lands; conveying hydrological changes and land loss, AGU conference, New Orleans, LA

          “An Intimate Talk” sponsored by the Photo Alliance, A Gallery for Fine Photography, New Orleans, LA

         “Loss and Found,” Platform/Signals event, A Studio in the Woods

         “Art + Water Panel Discussion”, Antenna Gallery, St.Claude Ave. New Orleans

         “Terraformation: Working the Elements as Creative Practice”, Platforms, Signals #4, January, 2017

2016 “Wetlands Art Tour 2016 interactive panel,” 5 Press Gallery, May

2015 “Sekai Mizu Kiko” National Japanese Television documentary

          Studio visit and presentation in New Orleans, by Chicago Art Institute visitors

2014 NPR: WATER, traveling theater presentation featuring “Shifting” and other stories.

          Presentation about work, Orange County Museum guests, Dan Cameron, at Goodchildren Gallery

          Studio Visit and Presentation, LACMA Orange County Museum, Art Horizons tour

2013 “Response,” Auckland Festival of Photography, Guest artist, Talking Culture Symposium, Auckland, New Zealand

2012 “Water Think Tank”-Feet to the Fire Program, Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut

           Kappa Delta Pi Honor Society, guest speaker, New Orleans

2011 Joan Mitchell Foundation Center, presenter, New Orleans

          Parallels lecture- guest speaker, Design within Reach and AIA, AIGA, New Orleans

          Georgia College and State University Museum, guest speaker, Milledgeville, Georgia

          Tulane University, guest speaker, New Orleans, Louisiana

           Kappa Delta Pi Honor Society, guest speaker, New Orleans

           “The Role of the Artist During Crisis” The Front Gallery, panelist, New Orleans

           “Gulf Restoration, 20×20”, Pecha Kucha Night 4, guest speaker, New Orleans

2009 “The Artist as Activist,” SURDNA Foundation, guest speaker,” New York

             Eyedrum Gallery, guest speaker, Atlanta, Georgia

2008 Loyola University, Guest Speaker, New Orleans

2007 “PhotoSpeak,” Contemporary Art Center, Moderator, New Orleans

2005 “Artspeak,” Contemporary Art center, Guest artist, New Orleans

Bibliography: Reviews, Periodicals and Blogs

•”Artscape: Michel Varisco aims to explore man’s relationship to Water” The Times Picayune, Sarah Bonette, February 8th, 2019

•”Michel Varisco Uses Magical Realism to Address Environmental Issues,” New Orleans Canvas Magazine, Spring 2019 

•”Between Worlds” Orion Magazine, Text by Anya Groner, Spring 2019

•”Go NOLA: Artist Highlight”, Hope Mills, November 8th, 2018

•”Critic’s Pick: Constructing the Break at the CAC”,Pelican Bomb, Nick Brierre Aziz, Sept 18th, 2018

•”Prospect Profile, Michel Varisco’s Art Distills Life on the Mississippi”, The New Orleans Advocate, John D’Addario, November 3rd, 2017

•”The Lotus in Spite of the Swamp, International Contemporary Art comes to New Orleans, New Orleans Magazine, John R. Kemp, November, 2017

•”Michel Varisco, Photographing the Shifting and Fragile Louisiana Landscape”, Louisiana Life Magazine, John Kemp, July-August 2017

•”Attention Art World Insiders:Prospect New Orleans Isn’t Just for You Anymore”, Artnet, May 23rd, 2017

•“Deep Time, Interview with Michel Varisco“ The Iron Lattice Volume 4, Land and Loss, May, 2017

• “Loss and Found,“ Antenna:: Signals Issue 005, May, 2017

• “Modern Day Mark Twain” writer Lara Naughton, February 2017

• “Varisco’s Turning wins Art Challenge” New Orleans Times Picayune, Jed Lipinski, March 25, 2015

• “NOEW: Sculpture design wins pitch event,” New Orleans City Business, Tegan Wendland, March 23rd, 2015

• “Wetlands Resources wins Water Challenge”, The New Orleans Advocate, April 4, 2015

• “A 1970’s renovated house is transformed into an art venue for Prospect 3, Times Picayune-States Item, Susan Langenhennig, January 23, 2015

• “Unfathomable and Infinite: ‘Alluvial Contructs’ at Octavia Art Gallery,” Pelican Bomb, Brooke Scheuller, November 28, 2014

• “Fluid States and Water Road on work by Michel Varisco and Daniel Minter,” New Orleans Gambit Weekly, D Eric Bookhardt , May 12th, 2014

• “Restoring the Gulf Coast” Audubon Magazine, New York, Scott Weidensaul, Nov 2014

• “Culture-Image Conscious-Auckland Festival of Photography” Metro- Auckland, New Zealand, Frances Morton, June 2013

• “Sights and Sounds” The Times Picayune States-Item, Best of New Orleans, Sue Strachan, September 6, 2013

• “Systems and Consequences: Michel Varisco’s Gulf Coast” Pelican Bomb, Nathan Martin, July 11, 2012

• “Shifting” Point of View Magazine, Terry Trahan, December 5th, 2012

• “New Exhibit Reveals Shifting Coastline” Houma Today, Nikki Buskey, November 8, 2012

• “Shifting at the Ogden,” New Orleans Magazine, Sarah Ravits Interview, May of 2012

• “Shifting through the Spill,” Louisiana Cultural Vistas Magazine, Volume 23 no. 1, Spring 2012

• “Spill, revealing the human factor behind an environmental tragedy,” Wesleyan Argus, Michael Darer, Feb 2012

• “Reis wordt blog wordt tentoonstelling wordt blog wordt recensie,” Metropolis M, Domeniek Ruyters, October 11, 2011, The Netherlands

• “Everybody is going Green,” Work Style Magazine, April of 2011, edition 6, Switzerland

• “Shifting: cycles of loss on a sinking coast” Ecotone Magazine, Fall 2011, Volume 7

• “To live in the South one has to be a scar lover” Mister Motley Arts Magazine, Netherlands, September 2011, Issue 29

• “After the Storm”, The Future of the South Issue 70, The Oxford American Magazine, Anne Gisleson, September 2010

• “Rising Stars” New Orleans Gambit Weekly, D. Eric Bookhardt, January 3, 2011

• “Along The PhotoNOLA trail, Uptown”, New Orleans Gambit, D. Eric Bookhardt, Dec 19, 2010

• “Multispecies Salon 3: Swarm” New Orleans Gambit Weekly, D. Eric Bookhardt, November 23, 2010

•“The Culture of Calamity”, Believer Magazine, Anne Gisleson, September/October 2010

• “National preserve status urged-Intellectual gathering looks at,” The New Orleans Times Picayune-States Item, Molly Reid, June12, 2010 p.B1-2

• “Art critic Doug MacCash’s guide to 19 pieces of outdoor New Orleans art”, The New Orleans Times Picayune-States Item, April 5th, 2009

• “Muses: Recent Work by Female Artists” New Orleans Gambit Weekly, D. Eric Bookhardt, January 20, 2009/volume 30/ number 3

• “Highwater Mark for Arts” Forecast public art, Dec 2008

• “21 Public Art Projects” ArtVoices, Dan Tague, June, 2008

• “Sanctuary” Newark Star- Ledger, August, 2008

• “Art in the Ruins” New Orleans Gambit Weekly, D. Eric Bookhardt, September 27, 2007

• “On Course” The New Orleans Times Picayune-States Item, Doug MacCash, September 28, 2007

• “People to Watch 2007,” New Orleans Magazine, September 23, 2007

• “Femmes Fatales: Photo shows celebrates the work of some of the city’s finest” The New Orleans Times

Picayune-States Item, Doug MacCash, March 24, 2006

• “The Shapes of Things to come from Varisco” The New Orleans Times Picayune-States Item, by Doug MacCash, April 16, 2004

• Adbusters: Journal of the Mental Environment, March/Apr 2003 No 46, p. 114.

• New Orleans Gambit Weekly, D.Eric Bookhardt, March 4, 2003/volume 24/ number 10.

• Meena-A bilingual journal of Arts and Letters, New Orleans, LA, 2005, p.11, 102, 117, 119, 122.

• The New Orleans Review essay by Tom Whalen, Volume 27 Number 1, Spring/Summer 2001, cover photograph, pgs 96-1075

• “Are you in denial?” Refqa Abu Remaileh, Adbusters: Journal of the Mental Environment, March/Apr 2003 No 46, p. 114