Most of my recent work begins as simple interactions with my family. I preserve some aspect of these interactions as photos, video or audio snippets and display them in ways that expose the meaning and strangeness immanent in commonplace objects and activities. As an artist I think of myself as a “tinkerer”. I go into the studio and take ideas, language, electronics— everything apart to see how it works. I attempt to put these bits and pieces back together in ways that expose underlying structures and unexpected tensions in the fabric of the everyday. I am increasingly interested in making work that reveals rather than conceals my messy process of experimentation in the hope that viewers will enter into the spirit of playfulness and shared discovery.

 A two-word question posing as a description.

Academic Papers of General Interest

Show Me the Semiosis: 
Grounding Post-Structural Theory in Physiological Experience

Most of my art students experience a very down to earth epistemological relationship to the world. There is what there is. Middle America is a land of dualisms:  matter and spirit, mind and body, good and evil. In this uncluttered black and white world, post-structural theory seemingly has little to offer but a range of unnecessary and unattractive grays.  I describe how I overcome my students’ resistance to intellectualizing art.  I use a physiological perspective that grounds students’ investigation of art and meaning in an investigation of themselves, their bodies, their perceptual responses, emotional reactions and cognitive processes. I meet them where they are and lead them to “discover” polysemia, semiotics, deconstruction, pleasure in genre, the gaze, the over-estimation of consciousness and the myth of authorial intent.

Show Me the Semiosis .pdf Show Me the Semiosis .pdf
Size : 162.727 Kb
Type : pdf

A Grotesque Paradise

Why are the Power Rangers and Pokemon so irresistible to children and so annoying to adults? A comparative analysis of the Power Rangers, the Roman Grotesque, and archaic paradise myths reveals a parallel aesthetic realm, with its own internal logic, myths and ethics. The workings of this pre-lingual ontology are examined, focusing on its use in the construction of such master narratives as “Nature”, “Culture”, and “Technology”.


Grotesque Paradise IVLA.pdf Grotesque Paradise IVLA.pdf
Size : 0.203 Kb
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 Wabi-Sabi and Counter Culture:

Coaxing Beauty from Ugliness

Wabi-Sabi and Counter Culture

In its fullest sense wabi-sabi defines a holistic worldview and way of being.  In its narrowest sense it defines a particular kind of earthy style, flawed beauty and practiced unpretentiousness. I believe that wabi-sabi can be a useful concept to help describe and examine the systems of values and aesthetic sensibilities produced by various youth subcultures. 


Wabi-Sabi.pdf Wabi-Sabi.pdf
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 Taking “Visual Language” Literally:Beyond Literacy Towards a 21st Century Design Curriculum

Taking Visual Language Literally

The ways in which we currently teach visual design is largely grounded on a sound analogy but a faulty model. The analogy is that visual communication constitutes a language. However, the importance of this insight has remained largely unrealized because educators have unduly focused upon reading literacy to provide many of the pedagogical models for design curricula. Taking the concept of “visual language” seriously means reexamining the institutional history of design instruction, and the consideration of alternative paradigms based on language acquisition.


visual literacy IVLA3.pdf visual literacy IVLA3.pdf
Size : 3.021 Kb
Type : pdf

Learning Partnerships: Distributive Leadership in the Foundations Classroom

Contemporary theories of leadership can help to overcome  the traditional “command style” conception of student leadership in favor of more nuanced and flexible “post heroic” models. One such model, distributive leadership, can provide a useful framework for instructors and students  to creatively re-imagine what and how art is explored in the classroom.



Learning Partnerships.pdf Learning Partnerships.pdf
Size : 106.516 Kb
Type : pdf

Turning On the Tuning In:

Using Media Studies to Energize 2D Design

All television is educational television.  The only questions are what is it teaching and how can we use it to teach design students?


Turning On Tuning In.pdf Turning On Tuning In.pdf
Size : 0.138 Kb
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The Value of the Text:

A Review of Drawing: Space Form and Expression

An examination of the value of required textbooks for visual arts courses masquerading as a book review...


book review.pdf book review.pdf
Size : 0.084 Kb
Type : pdf

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