I am an Oika artist, curator and mentor.
I make Oika art, teach what it is and support others who make it too.
My work reflects a life-path that traverses some of the most extreme natural and intellectual environments on Earth. Mine is an origin story of sequential transformations.
With the earliest inclinations of a wild child, I roamed the residual patchwork of backwoods, baywaters and cranberry bogs of coastal New England. Ingesting the light and loam of these habitats instilled a phenomenology of belonging still palpable today. Even as I write these words, the smell of pine-duff warming in the sun, the glacial grit between my teeth, and the chill of winter-wet socks permeate my senses. Instead of attending high school, I worshiped the fecund Atlantic. Her green pelagic pulses thwarted any academic ambitions. Surfing was my religion and I prayed daily.
Before the rhythms of maturity could set in, my sea ilk landed me on the deck of a commercial fishing trawler. At least until that day, on Stellwagen Bank, when an 800-pound bluefin tuna somehow spoke to me. A dying eye rekindled this inner child’s affections for creatures and the communication sparked a curiosity that carried me around the world. Learning nature’s language eventually transformed me into a scientist. Touching the bottom of the well of science, I discovered no secret mandate or means to explain the whispers I still hear daily between “inner” and “outer” worlds.
I left science believing that humanity has lost an effable experience of continuity between what’s personal and natural. Without this lived-sense of belonging, we fail to respond appropriately to the many maladies that define the Anthropocene. True ecological restoration is a psychic task asking us to first heal an inherited schism from nature. This requires more than science. This requires emotion, reason, gratitude and love. This requires art.
Today I seek to create and activate a new kind of ameliorative art, and a movement that can change the climate of our minds.
CV available on request.