THE CORE PRINCIPLES OF MY TEACHING PHILOSOPHY:
- The source of art is inspiration and great art inspires. My goal is to capitalize on the cyclical nature of inspiration by encouraging students to find their individual muses while motivating their peers through positive example. As Antoine de Saint-Exupéry said: “When you want to build a ship, do not begin by gathering wood, cutting boards, and distributing work, but rather awaken within men the desire for the vast and endless sea.”
- Students deserve complete academic and creative freedom in a safe, nurturing environment.
- The expectations for my students include hard work, personal responsibility, and respect.
- School is not just a place to think, but a place to learn how to think. Focus is placed on critical thinking, constructive criticism, and creative problem solving.
- Past, Present, and Future. As students prepare for the future, they must understand and familiarize themselves with a diverse set of historic and contemporary art.
- Innovation over emulation. Finding new connections through creative inquiry is encouraged over replicating existing trends. This applies to both global and immediate environments, avoiding any type of homogeneous style. In the words of Paul Gauguin: “Art is either plagiarism or revolution.”
- Will Durant said that “Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.” For this reason, school should be recognized as a moment in a lifetime of learning, not a means to an end.
- Emphasis should be placed on the similarities between the arts and other fields—not the differences. As Leonardo da Vinci said: “Study the science of art. Study the art of science. Develop your senses—especially learn how to see. Realize that everything connects to everything else.”
- A classroom is not a top-down lecture hall. Students need to engage in active collaboration, hands-on experience, group discussion, presentation, and interactive critiques.
- Technology is evolving exponentially. It is important to remain aware of the impending change while integrating new methods and technologies into the classroom.
- To teach is to learn. This philosophy is always a work in progress.
I believe art to be one of the most subjective terms in language. For me, art is just the magnificently ambiguous word that describes what I make. When I create—that is, connect existing ideas that have previously not been connected—I strive for two things: difference and beauty. Difference being something that exists in unique contrast to everything else. Beauty, referring to the emotional connection between a piece of art and the viewer. While beauty, like art, is a subjective term that defies definition, I believe it is most powerful when it is simple or complex which is why I strive to avoid the middle.
In my art, concept determines medium. Therefore, I cover a diverse range of media including video, print, sound, and music. Although my work leans towards the conceptual use of new media, I also enjoy working with traditional media. I believe that the creative process is an exploratory journey that is often as important as the end result or destination. My journey as an "artist" has led me to explorations beyond fine art and into design, typography, architecture, and cartography.
I seek influence from everything, everywhere, all of the time—for better or worse. For this reason, my primary subject matter covers the varying topics I surround myself with—philosophy, religion, science, political subversion, etcetera—though, I also experiment with non-objective abstraction.
To provide an artist statement is to imply understanding of how an artist is defined. I cannot define artistry, therefore, I can only provide this statement as a brief, ever-evolving interpretation of my current body of work.