Lena Chen (b. 1987, San Francisco) is a Chinese American artist creating performances and socially engaged art in live and virtual contexts. Awarded Mozilla Foundation’s 2022 Creative Media Award and Best Emerging Talent at the 2019 B3 Biennial of the Moving Image, her work has appeared at Transmediale (Berlin), Haus der Kulturen der Welt (Berlin), Baltimore Museum of Art, Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville, Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, Museum of Modern Art (Antwerp), Centre for Contemporary Art (Derry~Londonderry), Times Art Center (Berlin), Färgfabriken (Stockholm), INVERSE Performance Art Festival (Bentonville), Tempting Failure (London), and Salt Lake City Performance Art Festival, among others.
She has been awarded grants and residencies from Sundance Institute, Mozilla Foundation, UC Berkeley’s Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity, Millay Colony for the Arts, Pittsburgh Foundation, Office of Public Art, Burning Man Global Arts Fund, Civic Media Lab, Frank-Ratchye STUDIO for Creative Inquiry, Wave Pool Gallery, Women’s Media Center, and Kelly Strayhorn Theater. A founding member of the artist collective, Maternal Fantasies, she is the recipient of the Arthur Boskamp Foundation Advancement Award 2019/2020. She has spoken widely on feminist art and activism at venues such as Oxford, Yale, Stanford, Ars Electronica, SXSW, and re:publica. She is the founder of Heal Her, an expressive arts initiative that has convened storytelling circles, festivals, and events in seven countries for survivors of sexual and gender-based violence.
She earned a BA in sociology from Harvard University and a MFA at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Art. She is pursuing a PhD in Performance Studies at UC Berkeley.