Tricia McLaughlin received an MFA from Hunter College in 2000 and a BFA from Syracuse University in 1986. Just after earning her BFA in Painting, McLaughlin served in the Peace Corps in Costa Rica from 1987-89, working in the Women in Development Program. Since then she has been awarded various grants and fellowships, including a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2005, two grants from the Jerome Foundation (Travel Grant, 2006 and Media Arts Grant, 2004) and an Artist’s Fellowship from New York Foundation for the Arts.
McLaughlin works in the realm of fantasy architecture in the form of 3D design, animation, painting and sculpture. She plays with the ideas of restructuring human behavior. The structures are based on her own logic, which often leads to geometry that is anthropomorphized. It becomes an emotional and thinking architecture that considers the social interactions it effects.
In her work, function follows arbitrary form. From these new forms the rules change. Ordinary behavior turns into a game, especially when water is malleable, land folds by itself to form buildings or ephemeral materials such as clouds grow into biomorphic architecture.
In 2006 she completed a 9 x 90 foot animation of a virtual aquarium for a permanent public art commission at the City of Virginia Beach Convention Center. Her work has been exhibited in the US, Canada, England, Germany, Spain, Russia, Chile, South Korea and Japan. She lives and works in New York, NY, USA. Currently she is an Associate Professor in the Visual Arts Department at the State University of New York College at Old Westbury.