Nikki Giraffo, originally from New Jersey, currently resides in the greater Lowell area. She received her Bachelors in Fine Arts from Alfred University and her Masters in the Arts of Teaching through Tufts University.
As an artist Nikki specializes in large-scale mural work, painting, fiber, and collage. Her technical approach is based in experimentation with unconventional materials and alternative collage processes.
As an educator and co-founder of Refuge, Nikki has taught art in a variety of settings from residential programs to Advanced Placement level high school art. Working in the Lowell public schools, she identified a need for equitable access to rigorous art instruction. As a result, Refuge was created. Nikki has made it her mission since 2014 to use Refuge as a program that supports students who may not have the means to or access to receive the support necessary to develop as artists and/or create portfolios for college admission.
Her teaching style tailors to the individual through differentiated instruction, encouraging young artists to find confidence in their own artistic voice and a path that's right for them.