Nina Rivera

Nina Rivera is a photographer and writer from the Bronx, New York. The synergy of her written word and visuals is powered by the way in which language can both reveal and obscure reality. Her work revels in polarities: joy in the face of trauma, contentedness amongst loss, and beauty tainted by the macabre.

Instead of afternoons on the playground, most of my childhood was spent running the halls of my mother’s job, at the dentist office. This unique upbringing has allowed me access into the world of dentistry unlike most. My thesis, when the first teeth go, explores the dental practice as a structure of inequity and trauma, and of care and intimacy. Through a handmade art book, photographic print, and castings of my own mouth, I unravel the disparities in oral health care based on race, socioeconomic status/class, and American beauty standards. This work is meant to ask us, what does care look like and who is on the receiving end of this care?